SIBEL B. KUSIMBA
1997 Ph.D. in Anthropology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
1992 M.A. in Anthropology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
1988 A.B. in Anthropology (Departmental Honors), Bryn Mawr College
2014-2017 Anthropologist in Residence, American University, Washington, DC
2007-2014 Associate Professor of Anthropology, Northern Illinois University
2003-2007 Assistant Professor of Anthropology, Northern Illinois University
2001-2003 Assistant Professor of Anthropology, Lawrence University, Appleton, WI
2003 Kusimba, S. B. African Foragers: Environment, Technology, Interactions. AltaMira Press, Walnut Creek, CA.
2003 Kusimba, C. M., and S. B. Kusimba (Editors). East African Archaeology: Foragers, Potters, Smiths, and Traders. MASCA, the University of Pennsylvania Press.
Refereed Journal Articles
2018 Kusimba, S. B. It is Easy for Women to Ask: Gender and Digital Finance in Kenya. Economic Anthropology. Special Issue Theme: Finance. Accepted, forthcoming June.
2018 Kusimba, S. B. Money, Mobile Money, and Ritual in Western Kenya: The Contingency Fund and the Thirteenth Cow. African Studies Review. Accepted, forthcoming September.
2016 Kusimba, S.B., Y. Yang, and N. Chawla. Hearthholds of Mobile Money in Western Kenya. Economic Anthropology 3:266-279.
2015 Kusimba, S. B., Y. Yang, and N. Chawla. Family Networks of Mobile Money in Kenya. Information Technology in International Development 11(3):1-21.
2013 Kusimba, C., S. Kusimba, and L. Dussubieux. Beyond the Coastalscapes: Preindustrial Social and Political Networks in East Africa. African Archaeological Review 30:399-426.
2008 L. Dussubieux, C. M. Kusimba, V. Gogte, S. B. Kusimba, B. Gratuze, R. Oka. The Trading of Ancient Glass Beads: New Analytical Data from South Asian and East African Soda-Alumina Glass Beads. Archaeometry 50:797-821.
2005 Kusimba, C. M., S. B. Kusimba, and D. Wright. The Development and Collapse of Precolonial Ethnic Mosaics in Tsavo, Kenya. Journal of African Archaeology 3 (2):135-192.
2005 Kusimba, S. B. 2005. What is a Hunter-gatherer? Some problems in the archaeology of Eastern and Southern Africa. Journal of Archaeological Research 13:337-366.
2003 Terrell, J. E., J. Hart, S. Kusimba, N. Cellinese, A. Curet, T. Denham, C. Kusimba, Kyle Latinis, Rahul Oka, Joel Palka, M. Pohl, K. Pope, P. Williams, H. Haines, and J. Staller. Domesticated Landscapes: The Subsistence Ecology of Plant and Animal Domestication. Journal of Archaeological Method and Theory 10:323-368.
2002 Kusimba, S. B. The Early Later Stone Age in East Africa: Excavations and Lithic Assemblages from Lukenya Hill, Kenya. African Archaeological Review 18:77-123.
1999 Kusimba, S. B. Hunter-gatherer Land Use Patterns in Later Stone Age East Africa. Journal of Anthropological Archaeology 18:165-200.
1994 Kusimba, S. B. Middle and Later Stone Age Lithic Technology and Land Use Patterns in East African Savannas. African Archaeological Review 12:44-70.
Journal Articles, Not Refereed
2017 Kusimba, C. M. and S. B. Kusimba. “Preindustrial Water Management in Eastern Africa.” Journal of Global Archaeology and Anthropology. 1(2):1-13.
2004 Kusimba, C. M., and S. B. Kusimba. Archaeology as Anthropology Today and Tomorrow: Perspectives from Africa. Teaching Anthropology: The Society for Anthropology in Community Colleges Notes, 10:13-17.
2000 Kusimba, C. M., and S. B. Kusimba. Hinterlands and Cities: Archaeological Investigations of Economy and Trade in Tsavo, Southeastern Kenya. Nyame Akuma 54: 97-100.
1997 Kusimba, S. B. Later Stone Age Site Use Patterns at Lukenya Hill, Kenya. Journal of Middle Atlantic Archaeology 13:9-25.
Chapters in Edited Collections
2018 Kusimba, C. M., Sloan R Williams, Janet Monge, Mohamed Mchula, Rahul Oka, Gilbert Oteyo, Sibel Kusimba, and Laure Dussubieux. “Mtwapa.” In The Swahili World, edited by Stephanie Wynne-Jones and Adria LaViolette, Routledge, London, pp 226-230.
2018 Kusimba, C. and Kusimba, S. “Mosaics.” In The Swahili World, edited by Stephanie Wynne-Jones and Adria LaViolette. Routledge, London, pp. 403-418.
2018 Kusimba, S., Gabriel Kunyu, and Elizabeth Gross. “Social Networks of Mobile Money in Kenya.” In Money at the Margins: Global Perspectives on Technology, Financial Inclusion, and Design, edited by B. Maurer, S. Musaraj, and I. Small. Berghahn Books, London, pp. 179-199.
2017 Kusimba, C., R. Oka, V. Gogte, L. Dussubieux, and S. Kusimba. “Predatory Commerce and Economic Disaster: A Cautionary Tale from the Seventeenth-Century Indian Ocean Economy.” In Africa and its Diaspora: History, Identity, and Economy, edited by Samuel Oloruntoba. Panafrican University Press, Austin, Texas, pp. 89-102.
2017 Kusimba, C., and Kusimba, S. “Trade and State Formation on the Ancient East African Coast and Southern Zambezia.” In Feast, Famine, or Fighting: Multiple Pathways to Social Complexity, ed. R. Chacon and R. Mendoza. Springer, New York, pp. 61-90.
2016 Kusimba, S. “An American in Kenya: Experiences at an African University.” In Distant Mirrors: America as a Foreign Culture, edited by Philip DeVita. Fourth Edition, pp. 57-66. Waveland Press, Long Grove, IL.
2013 Kusimba, C. M., J. Monge, and S. Kusimba. “The Identity of Early Kenyan Coastal Peoples: A Comparative Analysis of Human Remains from Shanga, Mtwapa and Taita.” In Coastal Identities in East Africa, edited by R. Gearhart. Africa World Press, Trenton, NJ. Pp. 1-24.
2013 Kusimba, S. B. “Hunter-gatherers of Eastern and Southeastern Africa from 20,000 years ago to the present.” In The Oxford Handbook of African Archaeology, edited by Paul Lane and Peter Mitchell. Oxford University Press, Oxford. Pp. 310-326.
2009 Kusimba, C.M. and S.B. Kusimba. “Leadership in Middle Range African Societies.” In Evolution of Leadership, edited by J. Kantner, and K. Vaughn. School of Advanced Research Press, Santa Fe. Pp 223-248.
2007 Kusimba, S. B., and C. M. Kusimba. “Intensification and Protohistoric Agricultural Practices in East Africa. In Seeking a Richer Harvest: The Archaeology of Subsistence Intensification, Innovation, and Change, edited by T. Thurston and C. Fisher. New York: Kluwer/Academic. Pp. 127-143.
2006 Kusimba, C. M., S. B. Kusimba, and B. Abgaje-Williams. “Precolonial African Cities: Size and Density.” In Urbanism in the Preindustrial World: Cross-Cultural Approaches, edited by G. Storey. University of Alabama Press, Tuscaloosa. Pp. 145-160.
2005 Kusimba, C. M., and S. Kusimba. “Mosaics and Interactions: East Africa, 2000 BP to the Present.” In African Archaeology: A Critical Introduction, edited by Ann Stahl, pp.392-419. London: Blackwell Studies in Global Archaeology, Blackwell Press.
2003 Kusimba, S. B., and C. M. Kusimba. “Comparing Prehistoric and Historic Hunter-gatherer Mobility in Southern Kenya.” In Current Research Themes in Later East African Archaeology, edited by C. Kusimba and S. Kusimba, pp.1-16. MASCA, The University of Pennsylvania Press.
2002 Kusimba, S. B. “History.” In Darwin in Archaeology: A Handbook of Concepts, edited by John Terrell and John Hart, pp. 143-160. Westport, Ct: Bergin and Garvey.
1995 “Obsidian Source Use at Lukenya Hill, Kenya.” In Aspects of African Archaeology, edited by G. Pwiti and R. Soper, pp. 303-313, Harare, Zimbabwe: University of Harare Press.
2008 Kusimba, S.B. “East African Foragers.” In The Encyclopedia of Archaeology, edited by Deborah Pearsall. Elsevier Science, Academic Press, New York. Pp. 15-17.
1999 Kusimba, S. B., and Fred H. Smith. “Acheulean.” In The Encyclopedia of Prehistory, edited by P. Peregrine and M. Ember, pp. 1-22. New York: Kluwer Academic/Plenum.
Working Papers and Other Publications
2017 Kusimba, S., G. Kunyu, and N. Musombi. Feeling, Information, Networks, Value. Final Report to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. 141 pp.
2016 Kusimba, S. G. Kunyu, and N. Musombi. Dynamic Networks of Mobile Money among Unbanked Women in Western Kenya. Final Report to Institute for Money, Technology, and Financial Inclusion, University of California at Irvine. 12 pp.
2015 Kusimba, S., G. Kunyu, and A. Wanyama. Mobile Money and Coming of Age in Western Kenya. Final Report to Institute for Money, Technology, and Financial Inclusion, University of California at Irvine. 67 pp. http://www.imtfi.uci.edu/files/docs/2015/Final%20Report%20Kusimba.pdf
2013 Kusimba, S., Harpieth Chaggar, Elizabeth Gross, and Gabriel Kunyu. Social Networks of Mobile Money in Kenya. Working Paper, Institute for Money, Technology, and Financial Inclusion, University of California at Irvine. http://www.imtfi.uci.edu/files/2013-1_kusimba_1.pdf
2016 Kusimba, S., G. Kunyu, and D. Mark. Women, Social Capital, and Financial Inclusion: Linking Customer Data with Ethnographic Perspectives. IMTFI Blog, August 9. http://blog.imtfi.uci.edu/2016/08/women-social-capital-and-financial.html
2015 Kusimba, S., G. Kunyu, and A. Wanyama. The Contingency Fund and the Thirteenth Cow, Part 1. IMTFI Blog, July 13. http://blog.imtfi.uci.edu/2015/07/the-contingency-fund-and-thirteenth-cow.html
2015 Kusimba, S., G. Kunyu, and A. Wanyama. The Contingency Fund and the Thirteenth Cow, Part 2. IMTFI Blog, July 18. http://blog.imtfi.uci.edu/2015/07/the-contingency-fund-and-thirteenth-cow_20.html
2015 Kusimba, S. Interactive Webinar Recap with Professor Kusimba and M-Changa. IMTFI Blog, March 26. http://blog.imtfi.uci.edu/2015/03/interactive-webinar-recap-with.html
2015 Kusimba, S. Two New Videos about Networks and Mobile Money in Western Kenya. IMTFI Blog, April 3. http://blog.imtfi.uci.edu/2015/02/two-new-videos-about-networks-and.html
2013 Kusimba, S. Grandmothers as Mobile Money Brokers in Western Kenya. IMTFI Blog, Nov. 11. http://blog.imtfi.uci.edu/2013/11/grandmothers-as-mobile-money-brokers-in.html
Publications in Preparation and Under Review
Kusimba, S. Group Finance or Digital Credit? Approaches to Financial Inclusion in Kenya. In Mobile Money, Financial Inclusion and Development in Africa, edited by Ndunge Kiiti. Cornell Institute for Development Studies. Under Review.
Kusimba, S. Send Money Home: The Anthropology of Mobile Money. Book Manuscript in Preparation.
2016 The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Catalyzing Community Fundraising at Scale Using Mobile Money. ($30,000)
2015 The Institute for Money, Technology and Financial Inclusion at the University of California, Irvine. Group versus Individual Strategies: Dynamic Social Networks of Mobile Money among Unbanked Women in Western Kenya ($11,400).
2015 Mellon Fund for Faculty Research, American University ($4,000).
2014 The Institute for Money, Technology and Financial Inclusion at the University of California, Irvine. Mobile Money and Coming of Age in Western Kenya. ($27,410).
2012 The Institute for Money, Technology and Financial Inclusion at the University of California, Irvine. Family Wealth, Family Ties: Remittances and Kinship in Western Kenya. ($19,800).
2011 Research and Artistry Grant, Northern Illinois University. International Remittances in Kenya. ($10,000).
2009 Fulbright Senior Scholar to Kenya, 11 months, 2009-2010. US Department of State ($60,000).
2008 Lorraine Cobb Faculty Fellowship for Travel to Istanbul, Turkey, Northern Illinois University ($2000).
2007 National Science Foundation Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) #0648762 Archaeology of Mount Elgon, Kenya ($127,000) (Principal Investigator).
2005 Research and Artistry Grant, Northern Illinois University. Archaeology of Mount Elgon ($10,000).
2004 Faculty Research Grant, Northern Illinois University ($35,000).
2002 Faculty Research Grant, Lawrence University ($3000).
2000 National Science Foundation Archaeology Division Research Grant BCS- 0106664 ($150,000) (Co-PI with C. Kusimba).
1995 Dissertation Completion Fellowship, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign ($10,000).
1994 National Science Foundation Dissertation Research Grant BNS SBR 93-20534 DISS ($11,712).
1993 Fulbright Junior Scholar to Kenya ($24,910).
1993 Center for African Studies Dissertation Research Grant, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign ($400).
1993 Graduate College Dissertation Research Grant, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign ($700).
1987 Travel and Tuition Grant to attend the Harvard University/National Museums of Kenya Koobi Fora Field School, Koobi Fora, Kenya, Department of Anthropology, Bryn Mawr College.
Invited Grants from LOI; Not Awarded
2015 Not awarded, but one of three finalists invited to apply for a World Bank initiative on mobile money. Title: Situating the Mobile Money Experience: Ethnographic Case Studies from sub-Saharan Africa (a collaborative grant with the University of California, Irvine with a total budget of $300,000; American University component of the proposed budget was $60,000)
2015 Not awarded, but one of 250 out of more than 2000 proposals be selected from the LOI stage to final proposal: Follow the money: How are new digital financial services impacting women’s social networks and empowerment in Western Kenya? The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation ($500,000).
Grants to Improve Teaching
2012 Course Transformation Project Faculty Fellow, Northern Illinois University ($5000).
2011 University Honors Program Course Development Grant, Northern Illinois University. ($5000).
2002 Curriculum Development Grant, Lawrence University ($1800).
2017 Group Finance and Digital Products in Kenya. Mobile Money, Development and Financial Inclusion in Africa, The Center for Development Studies, Cornell University, April 22.
2016 Mobile Money and Finance in Kenya. Invited Lecture at Financial Inclusion Research Day, University of Bath Program in International Development, United Kingdom, November 2.
2016 A Social Network Approach to Women’s Social and Economic Empowerment through M-Pesa Use. Invited Lecture at Women’s Empowerment and Digital Financial Services: Exploring the Connections. USAID, Washington, DC, June 8.
2016 M-Changa: A Digital Fundraising Platform in Kenya (with David Mark). Invited Lecture to CGAP, Washington, DC, April 28.
2013 Social Networks and Mobile Money in Kenya. Presentation to the Africa Council of The Field Museum, Chicago, September 24.
2006 Slave Trade and Ivory Trade on the Kenya Coast. Invited Lecture, American Institute of Archaeology, University of Iowa, November 6.
2006 Anthropology and the African Past. Invited Lecture at 100 Years at Loyola University Anthropology Celebration, Loyola University, Chicago, March 31.
2006 Archaeology of the Ivory Trade in Africa. Public Lecture presented at the Midwest Museum of Natural History, Sycamore, Illinois, February 12.
2005 African Archaeology and Hunter-gatherers. Colloquium Series, Department of Anthropology, Harvard University, Cambridge, April 28.
2004 Mosaics in East African Archaeology. Department of Anthropology Colloquium Series, Department of Anthropology, University of Wisconsin, Madison, Oct. 25.
2002 New Research on Trade in Africa, Society of Wisconsin Archaeologists, The Oshkosh Public Museum, May 12
2002 Hunter-Gatherer Land Use Patterns in Later Stone Age East Africa. Noon Balloon, Field Museum, Chicago, October 28.
2002 Human Adaptations in Africa: Ideas from the Hunter-Gatherer Ethnographic Record. Colloquium Presented to the Department of Anthropology, Northwestern University, April 8.
2000 Fossils and DNA: Modern Human Origins. Talk for the Women’s Board, The Field Museum, April 11.
1999 Origins: Five Million Years of Human Evolution. Public Lecture at the Field Museum, Chicago, February 10.
Conference Papers Presented
2017 It is Easy for Women to Ask: Gendered Finance in Kenya. Paper presented at the Society for Economic Anthropology Meetings, Iowa City, April 5-9.
2016 Dynamic Networks of Mobile Money among Unbanked Women in Western Kenya. Paper Presented at the Seventh Conference for Funded Researchers, IMTFI, Irvine, California, April 20.
2015 Mobile Money and Emergent Finance in Kenya. Paper Presented at the PAC conference, American University, October 3.
2015 Social Networks of Mobile Money among Friends and Family in Western Kenya. Society for Economic Anthropology, University of Kentucky, Lexington, April 15.
2015 Idioms of Practice with Mobile Phones and Mobile Money in a Coming of Age Ritual in Western Kenya. American Ethnological Society, San Diego, CA, March 15.
2014 Mobile Money and Coming of Age in Western Kenya. Paper Presented at the Sixth Conference for Funded Researchers, IMTFI, Irvine, California, December 10.
2014 Family Networks of Mobile Money in Kenya. American Anthropological Association, December 3.
2014 The Anthropology of Mobile Communication in Kenya. Association for the Study of the Middle East and Africa, Washington, DC, November 1.
2013 International Remittances and Networks of Mobile Money: Chicago-Bungoma, Kenya. Remapping the Black Atlantic, DePaul University, Chicago, April 13.
2012 Mobile Money and Social Networks in Kenya. Paper Presented at the Fourth Conference of Funded Researchers, IMTFI, Irvine, California, December 3.
2011 Family Wealth, Family Ties: Remittances and Stay-behinds in Bungoma, Kenya. African Studies Association, Washington, DC, November 12.
2008 Fortified and Refuge Sites of the Late Iron Age. African Studies Association, Chicago, November 22.
2004 (with Chapurukha M. Kusimba). Tsavo Archaeology: Mosaics of the Iron Age. African Studies Association, New Orleans, November 18.
2004 Quaker Missionaries as Anthropologists in Western Kenya. African Studies Association, New Orleans, November 21.
2004 Later Stone Age Archaeology in Tsavo. Society for American Archaeology, Montreal, April 9.
2003 Four Fields and African Archaeology. American Anthropological Association. Chicago, November.
- Archaeology of Urban Hinterlands in the Tsavo National Park, Kenya. Society for Africanist Archaeology, Cambridge, July.
- (with Chapurukha M. Kusimba). Later Stone Age Archaeology in Tsavo, Kenya. Society for American Archaeology, Chicago, March.
1998 The Howieson’s Poort Industry from Nelson Bay Cave, South Africa. Paper read at the biennial meeting of the Society of Africanist Archaeologists, Syracuse, New York, April.
1997 (With Chapurukha M. Kusimba). Who Were the Iron Age East Africans? African Studies Association, Columbus, Ohio, December.
1997 (With Chapurukha M. Kusimba). Who Were the Iron Age East Africans? American Anthropological Association, Washington, D.C., November.
1995 Technological Organization Approaches to Africanist Lithic Analysis. American Anthropological Association, Washington, D.C., November.
1995 Obsidian Raw Material Transport and Use at Lukenya Hill, Kenya. Pan African Congress of Prehistory and Related Studies, Harare, Zimbabwe, July.
1995 Later Stone Age Lithic Raw Material Use at Lukenya Hill, Kenya. Society for American Archaeology, Minneapolis, April.
1994 Middle and Later Stone Age Lithic Transport at Lukenya Hill, Kenya, and Nasera Rockshelter, Tanzania. Society of Africanist Archaeologists, Indianapolis, March.
Webinars and Web Videos
2016 Featured Guest on UpFront, the Voice of America broadcast to Africa about Mobile Money in Kenya. https://m.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=1360738550627552&id=440676892633727
2015 Mobile Money, Philanthropy, and the Social Network Effect: Recent Research from Kenya and Product Innovation from M-Changa. NetHope, February 26. http://solutionscenter.nethope.org/blog/view/a-glimpse-into-future-of-mobile-money-societies-in-the-global-south
2015 Social Networks of Mobile Money in Kenya. Seven-minute web video produced with videographer Steven McCord with the support of IMTFI, University of California. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sywez6yKEbo
2014 Mobile Economies in Kenya – Webinar Wednesday at the American Anthropological Association, October 15. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=atbC_eF8jiI
American University: Culture and the Human Experience
Foundations of Anthropological Theory
Living in Multicultural Societies
Digital Humanity (Honors Course)
Northern Illinois University:
Archaeological Method and Theory
Archaeology of Gender
Archaeology of Africa
Foragers and Others: Hunter-gatherer Lifeways
Migration and Diaspora
Peoples and Cultures of Africa
Lawrence University: Freshman Studies
Introduction to Anthropology
Introduction to Biological Anthropology
Introduction to Archaeology
Colonial and Post-Colonial East Africa
Senior Capstone Supervisor,
American University: Shannon Keene, Anthropology, 2017
Angie Cook, SOC, 2015
M. A. Thesis Supervisor,
Northern Illinois University: Shawn Smith, 2013
Tiffany Arnold, 2012
Ryan Szymanski, 2008
Sarah Howard, 2009
Justin Faulkner, 2007
M. A. Thesis Committee Member,
Northern Illinois University: Sean McConnell, 2013
Kate Dewitt, 2013
Adam Kutryb, 2013
Jennifer Howard, 2008
Susan Kwosek, 2006
Rebecca Bria, 2004
Kevin Cooney, 2003
Ph.D. Committee Member,
University of Illinois at Chicago: Rahul Oka, 2008
David Wright, 2004
Other Professional Activities
- Host and Content Specialist for Origins Electronic Field Trip, an interactive nationwide telebroadcast. The Field Museum, Chicago, April 8.
1999 Curator and Content Specialist for the Human Evolution Exhibit Origins, The Field Museum, Chicago.
2015 Mobile Money, Digital Money, and Development in Kenya. Presentation to the Anthropology Society, American University, October.
2014 Mobile Money in Kenya. Lecture to Introduction to International Business with Professor Tomasz Mroczkowski, November 13.
2014 Studying Social Networks of Mobile Communication. Presentation to the Anthropology Club, Northern Illinois University, March 18.
2004 Hunters and Others in East African Archaeology. Brown Bag, Department of Anthropology, Northern Illinois University, February 29.
2002 The Tsavo Research Program, Last Chance/First Chance Lecture Series, Lawrence University, May 25.
2004 African Foragers named as a CHOICE outstanding academic book for 2003 by the American Library Association
1995 Dissertation Completion Fellowship, Graduate College, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign ($15,000).
1994 Graduate Fellowship, Graduate College, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign ($5,000).
1992 Foreign Language and Area Studies Fellowship for the study of Advanced Swahili ($5,000), University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
1989 Departmental Honors in Anthropology, Bryn Mawr College. Only one graduating senior awarded.
1987 Frederica de Laguna Award for Meritorious Academic Work, Department of Anthropology, Bryn Mawr College. Given to one rising Senior each year.
Professional and University Service
American University: Undergraduate Studies Committee, Anthropology Club Faculty Advisor
Northern Illinois University: Provost’s Committee, Library Committee, College of Arts and Sciences Dean’s Committee (Tenure and Promotion)
Department of Anthropology, Northern Illinois University: Personnel, Curriculum, Exams, Hiring Committees
African Studies Association: Local Planning Committee for 2008 Meetings
Antiquity, Journal of East African Studies, Africa, African Studies Review, Journal of Development Studies, Economic Anthropology, Antiquity, American Antiquity, African Archaeological Review, National Science Foundation, Journal of Archaeological Method and Theory
Society for Economic Anthropology; African Studies Association; American Anthropological Association; Society for African Archaeology; Fellow, Institute for Money, Technology and Financial Inclusion (IMTFI) University of California, Irvine; Member, Women and Finance Community of Practice, CGAP (The World Bank).
French (proficient); Kiswahili (proficient).