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Dagna Rams

photo DagnaDagna Rams recently started a PhD in social anthropology at the University of Lausanne. She holds a BA in social anthropology from the University of Cambridge and an MA in social anthropology from the Graduate Institute of Geneva (IHEID). Originally from Poland, Rams has always been interested in the so-called Soviet and post-Soviet space, sensing from a young age that her school friends, family and herself had been affected by a strange affliction that determined their awkwardness vis-a-vis the new capitalist mode of operating. Her BA thesis was on the mass-scale deprivation of parental rights among so-called dysfunctional families in Ukraine. She later worked on Russia and Eurasia in Chatham House and did social policy research for institutes and think-tanks in London, Kiev and Warsaw. During her MA at the IHEID she spent a semester in Ghana, a somewhat post-Soviet country, thanks to Kwame Nkrumah’s liaisons with Russia. In Accra, she crossed-paths with the duo behind the Slum Union of Ghana, a grassroots organisation headed by two inhabitants of Old Fadama. Their conversations and later their work together on various initiatives has reoriented her interests towards the question of slums, urban inequalities, informal economies. For he MA, she focused on political parties and transnational organisations in Old Fadama, and how their modes of distribution and gaining representation are negotiated, reinvented and amalgamated at the grassroots. Her PhD takes as its focus the same context, but a different set of questions.

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