Dr. Diana Ayeh

Thematic Area Environment and Society
Department of Environmental Politics

Helmholtz Centre for
Environmental Research − UFZ
Permoserstr. 15
04318 Leipzig, Germany

phone: ++49 - 341 - 235 482257

Foto Ayeh

Research Interests

  • Ethnographies of the economy and of social inequality
  • Ethics in the extractive industries and role of the public
  • (Post-)mining governance in Burkina Faso, Guinea and Germany
  • Spatiality and temporality of conflicts
  • Narratives of sustainability transformation (e.g., Circular Economy and Just Transition)
  • Extractivism as the material basis for the energy transition

Professional Career

since 11/2022 Research Associate in the Faculty of Business Studies, Harz University of Applied Sciences

since 05/2022 Research Associate in the Department of Environmental Politics, Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research - UFZ

01/2022 - 05/2022 Research Fellow of the Merian Institute for Advanced Studies in Africa (MIASA), University of Ghana

04/2020 - 05/2022 Research Associate in the Department of Urban and Environmental Sociology, Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research - UFZ

01/2016 - 12/2019 Research Associate in the Collaborative Research Centre (SFB) 1199, Subproject B06 Gold Mining and New Regulations of (Sub)National Spaces in Africa, University of Leipzig

01/2015 - 12/2015 Postgraduate Studies International Cooperation for Sustainable Development, Seminar for Rural Development (SLE), Humboldt-University Berlin

06/2015 - 11/2015 Junior Consultant SLE Study Inclusion grows - Developing a manual on disability mainstreaming for the German development cooperation Case study Namibia, Client: GIZ/BMZ

10/2011 - 07/2014 Master of Arts African Studies, University of Leipzig and Master de Recherche Dynamiques Africaines, Institut d'Études Politiques (IEP) Bordeaux

10/2007 - 09/2011 Bachelor of Arts Political Science, University of Leipzig

Current Projects

GeRohTrans: Societal Engagement in Raw Materials Research

Discourses and Narratives for Sustainability Transformation

K3I-Cycling: AI-based optimization of the recirculation of plastic packaging

recomine: Local alliance on mining legacies with support of a broad public community


Bleicher, A.; Ayeh, D. (2024): Die Rohstoffstrategie der Bundesregierung. In Politikum 10 (1), pp. 22–31. DOI: 10.46499/2339.2957

Ayeh, D. (2023). Struggles over Resource Decentralisation: Legislative Reform, Corporate Resistance and Canadian Aid Partnerships in Burkina Faso. International Development Policy 15. https://doi.org/10.4000/poldev.5230

Rutjes, H., Ayeh, D., Graf, D., Meißner, S., Pacher, A. (eds.) (2023): Methodenbaukasten für die transdisziplinäre Rohstoffforschung, Published online 21 June.

Ayeh, D., Bleicher, A. (2023). Rohstoffe im 21. Jahrhundert. In: Sonnberger, M., Bleicher, A., Groß, M. (eds) Handbuch Umweltsoziologie. Springer VS, Wiesbaden. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-658-37222-4_52-1

Ayeh, D., Zongo, T., & Sow, J. (2022). L'extraction minière dans un contexte d'(in)sécurité en Afrique de l'Ouest — boom ou bust? Mande Studies 24, 73-95. https://doi.org/10.2979/mnd.2022.a908470

Ayeh, D. (2022). Le droit minier face à l’éthique de l’or: Contestations autour d’une concession minière au Burkina Faso. Revue internationale des études du développement 249, 35-62. https://doi.org/10.4000/ried.770

Ayeh, D. (2022). What Local Gold Extraction Tells Us about a Globalized Mining Economy. TRAFO – Blog for Transregional Research. Published online 07 April 2022. 

Ayeh, D. (2021). Spaces of Responsibility: Negotiating Industrial Gold Mining in Burkina Faso. Berlin: DE GRUYTER OLDENBOURG (Dialectics of the Global 10). ISBN: 9783110689969

Ayeh, D., Bleicher A. (2021): One concept fits it all? On the relationship between geoethics and responsible mining. The Extractive Industries and Society 8 (3), 100934. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.exis.2021.100934

Ayeh, D. (2020): What’s “local” labor in Burkina Faso’s mining sector? Africa is a Country. Published online 25 June.

Ayeh D. (2019): Rezension zu: Mbembe, Achille: Critique of Black Reason. Durham 2017. Connections. A Journal for Historians and Area Specialists. Published online 21 September. ISBN: 978-0-8223-6343-9

Ayeh D. (2018): Yaramoko. Mining Conflicts in Burkina Faso. Published online 15 November.

Werthmann, K.; Ayeh, D. (2017): Processes of Enclaving under the Global Condition: The Case of Burkina Faso. Leipzig: Leipziger Universitätsverlag GmbH (Working paper series of the SFB 1199 Universität Leipzig, 4).

Kieck. B.; Ayeh, D., Beitzer, P., Gerdes, N. Günther, P., Wiemers, B. (2016): Inclusion Grows. Developing a manual on disability mainstreaming for the German Development Cooperation - Case Study Namibia. Berlin: Albrecht Daniel Thaer-Institut für Agrar- und Gartenbauwissenschaften. https://doi.org/10.18452/3211

Ayeh, D., Plastrotmann C., and Ziesemer S. (2016): Verantwortung ohne Grenzen? Deutsche Entwicklungszusammenarbeit im Kontext von Flucht und Vertreibung. Berlin: Seminar für Ländliche Entwicklung (SLE Briefing Paper 09). ISSN: 2197-8042

Ayeh, D., Rahn, K., Wendebourg, L., Bing, N, Kausch, S. (2015): Auf postkolonialen Spuren in Leipzig. Ein Stadtplan. Leipzig: Engagierte Wissenschaft e.V.