Elisa Gambino

Elisa Gambino


If you made any changes in Pure these will be visible here soon.

Personal profile


I joined GDI in 2023 as Lecturer in Global Development, with a focus on Global Political Economy. Previously, I taught at the London School of Economics and Political Sciences (LSE) and at the University of Edinburgh. 

My research focuses on the intersection between China’s outward economic engagement and Africa’s development trajectories. I study the internationalisation of Chinese capital in the African infrastructure, trade, and mining sectors, placing particular emphasis on roles of transnational networks in fostering the spatial expansion of Chinese companies.

I obtained my PhD in African Studies at Edinburgh as part of the ERC-funded "African Governance and Space" (AFRIGOS) Project led by Prof Paul Nugent. My doctoral project explored the internationalisation of Chinese state-owned companies in Kenya’s infrastructure sector.

I have also worked as a consultant in the private sector and for government bodies, including the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office.

Research interests

  • China-Global South engagement 
  • China's political economy 
  • African development 
  • State-business relations
  • Infrastructure and connectivity 
  • Transnational trade netoworks



  • MGDI60072 Global Political Economy
  • MGDI60502 Development Fieldwork (GTI Pathway)

Please book office hours through this link.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 9 - Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure

External positions

Adjunct Researcher, Centre of Asian Studies, University of Ghana

1 Mar 20231 Mar 2025

Guest Teacher, Department of International Relations, London School of Economics & Political Science (University of London)

Jan 2023Aug 2023


Dive into the research topics where Elisa Gambino is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.
  • 1 Similar Profiles


Recent external collaboration on country/territory level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots or
  • LSE Class Teacher Award

    Gambino, Elisa (Recipient), 2022

    Prize: Prize (including medals and awards)