Héritier MESA

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Master of Science in Social Development—Ateneo de Manila University (Philippines), Erasmus+ Universitatea Lucian Blaga din Sibiu (Romania), Advanced Master of Globalisation and Development—IOB University of Antwerp (Belgium).

Présentation des recherches

Research Subject: Identity and Social Positionality in the informal economy: A multidimensional analysis of social inequality in Kinshasa

This research project aims to study social inequality within the urban informal sector context from a social anthropological perspective. The main goal is, therefore, to explore how social structures—expressed here through social cleavages of class and identities— affect the material conditions of existence and life chances in the reproduction of poverty and inequality among Kinshasa’s informal traders. The research takes a double approach to the analysis of social inequality in the urban informal sector. On the one hand, because the urban space is constructed as a « field,» a place where various agents, located in different positions to one another, engage in relations of privilege and exclusion, the research initially embraces the analysis of distinction and social positionalities in studying the dynamics of multidimensional inequality among Kinshasa’s informal traders. On the other hand, life in the city is also intimately linked to urban governance or larger socioeconomic and political institutions. I propose therefore to investigate the political economy of the urban informal sector as well, and its linkages with social cleavages and positionality. The ultimate goal here is to establish the complex linkage between the two approaches: the relation between the dynamics of inequality linked to social positionality and the constraining macrostructures (in their socio-economic and political dimensions) in reproducing and sustaining social disparities.

Key Words: Informality, Inequality, Identity, Positionality

Travaux sélectionnés



2018. Women’s empowerment or disempowerment? A case study of Social Microfinance’s Activities and Gender Relations in Rizal Province. Social Transformation: Journal of the Global South, v. 6, n. 2, pp.5-40.

2017. Social Entrepreneurship: A New Way Towards Social Transformation in DR Congo, Congo-Afrique, n ̊519, pp. 925-930.