Gianluca Iazzolino

Gianluca Iazzolino


Accepting PhD Students

Personal profile


My research interests lie at the intersection of development studies, political economy, and digital geography. I use ethnographic methods to explore the precarious balance of inclusion and surveillance that characterises most digital development initiatives. Over the past twelve years, I've focussed on how digital platforms are reshaping power dynamics and instigating new forms of organisation and practices of contestation in Africa. 

I have a PhD from the University of Edinburgh and I was a Research Fellow at the LSE and the University of Oxford. I am a fellow of the Firoz Lalji Centre for Africa, LSE, and of the Institute of Money, Technology and Financial Inclusion (IMTFI), University of California Irvine. Previously, I have worked as a consultant for NGOs and aid organisations in Senegal, Burkina Faso and Niger, and as a freelance journalist in Africa, Central and South America, the Middle East, Russia and India.



My research has hitherto centred on three themes: digital technologies in humanitarian spaces; financial services for farmers in Africa; and platform labour in Africa and Southern Europe. I have recently started a new research to critically explore initiatives revolving around AI for the SDGs.   

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 8 - Decent Work and Economic Growth
  • SDG 9 - Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure
  • SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities
  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions

Areas of expertise

  • G Geography (General)
  • ICT4Development
  • Digital Development
  • Digital Humanitarianism
  • Financial inclusion

Research Beacons, Institutes and Platforms

  • Global Development Institute
  • Digital Futures


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Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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