Managing Uncertainty in Disaster Risk Reduction – An Ethnography of Data Practices in Ghana’s Emergency Preparedness and Early Intervention Infrastructure

Project: Research

Project Details


Research focus: For a number of African countries the window of opportunity for harnessing the developmental potential of the demographic transition is beginning to close, triggering intensified attention for policy interventions that promise – based on statistical projections – to maximise future socio-economic returns. Yet, despite the central role of calculative devices in contemporary African future-making, our understanding of the knowledge bases and quantitative practices informing such interventions remains rudimentary. The proposed project focuses on the production of evidence-based welfare policy in Ghana through the ethnographic observation of statistical and policy practices and their situatedness in an emerging digital population data ecosystem. The project builds on previous work relating to biometric identification, quantitative analyses of development and the sensing of welfare needs through key development indicators. The projected study will explore how innovations in population data impact the modelling of future welfare and the targeting and design of interventions for future welfare gains. The proposed project expands the horizon of contemporary welfare studies and of the social study of quantification alike by theorising statistical experts’ engagement with computational arrangements, including their capacities for manoevering the multiple and layered indeterminacies related to the limited coverage of population data, adaptations of the circulation of statistical models, and the intergenerational observation of projected policy outcomes.
Short titleMUNDI
Effective start/end date01/09/202331/08/2025


  • European Commission: DKK1,719,269.00


  • Welfare Policy
  • Sociology of Quantification
  • Techno-Anthropology
  • STS-Africa


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