Prof. Dr. Johara Berriane

Refugee, Migration and Mobility Studies

Institute of Cultural Studies


Tel.: +49 89 6004-2407



Johara Berriane has been Professor of Refugee, Migration and Mobility Studies at the University of the Bundeswehr since 1 March 2023. After studying anthropology, political science and Islamic studies in Freiburg i. Brsg. and Paris, she obtained her phD in 2014 in Berlin with a dissertation on the trans-Saharan entanglements und mobilities in connection with the Sufi order of the Tidjaniyya. She was then a visiting researcher at the International Migration Institute in Oxford and the Zentrum Moderner Orient in Berlin, as well as a research fellow at the Chaire d'études africaines comparées of the Ecole d'économie et de gouvernance in Rabat. She later researched and taught in Dakar as part of the transnational research group on the bureaucratization of African societies initiated by the German Historical Institute Paris and the Centre de recherche sur les politiques sociales. Most recently, she was a researcher and co-leader of the research focus "Mobility, Migrations, Reconfiguration of Spaces" at the Centre Marc Bloch in Berlin and taught at the Humboldt University Berlin. She has conducted field research in Morocco, Mali, Senegal, and Côte d'Ivoire.


Research Interests

  • Trans-Saharan Connections
  • Student Mobility
  • Sufism and Saint Worship 
  • Religion and Urbanity
  • Migration, Mobility and Integration in African cities
  • Religious Bureaucracies
  • Humanitarism
  • Ethnographic research


At the University of the Bundeswehr Munich, Johara Berriane will work on the social and cultural determinants and impacts of African refugee and migration, as well as on the production of knowledge about refugee, migration and mobility studies from an interdisciplinary and transregional comparative perspective.


Publications (selection)

"Faith Papers. Transnational Mobility, Christian Networks, and Citizenship in Morocco and Senegal" (2021) in Identification and Citizenship in Africa. Biometrics, the Documentary State and Bureaucratic Writings of the Self, edited by Séverine Awenengo Dalberto and Richard Banégas, Routlegde.

“’Conquering New Territory for Jesus?’ The Transience and Local Presence of African Pentecostal Migrants in Morocco” (2021) in: Refugees and Religion. Ethnographic Studies of Global Trajectories, edited by Birgit Meyer and Peter van der Veer, DOI 10.5040/9781350167162.0016


"Religion in Spaces of Transit: African Christian Migrant Churches and Transnational Mobility in Morocco". (2020) Journal of Intercultural Studies, Vol. 41, Issue 4. https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/07256868.2020.1778653?journalCode=cjis20

"Les Marocains de l’Afrique de l’Ouest. Evolutions récentes d’une communauté en mouvement (Sénégal et Côte d’Ivoire)" (2019) in Marocains de l'extérieur – 2017, edited by Fondation Hassan II des Marocains résidant à l'étranger.

„The Moroccan ‘moment’: mobility and belonging in the transnational trajectories of sub-Saharan migrants“ (2018) in Forging African societies. Mobility, Integration and Belonging, edited by Oliver Bakewell and Loren Landau, Palgrave MacMillan, Basingstoke.https://www.palgrave.com/la/book/9781137581938#

„Transit, Einwanderung und Zirkulation. Geopolitische und sozioökonomische Faktoren der marokkanischen Migrationstransition“ (2017), Berliner Debatte Initial 28, Heft 4. 

Ahmad al-Tijânî de Fès : un sanctuaire soufi aux connexions transnationales (2016), Paris, L’Harmattan. 

„Pilgrimage, spiritual tourism and the shaping of transnational ‘imagined communities’: the case of the Tidjani ziyara to Fez“ (2015), International Journal of Pilgrimage and Religious Tourism. Vol. 3, Issue 2, Article 4. https://arrow.dit.ie/ijrtp/vol3/iss2/4/ 

„Sub-Saharan students in Morocco: Determinants, everyday life and future plans of a high skilled migrant group” (2015), Journal of North African Studies, Vol. 20, Issue 4, 2015. Doi: 10.1080/13629387.1065042 

„Intégration symbolique et ancrages sur l’ailleurs: les Africains subsahariens de Fès et leur rapport à la zaouïa d’Ahmad al-Tijânî“ (2014), L'Année du Maghreb, XI. https://journals.openedition.org/anneemaghreb/2277 

„La formation des élites subsahariennes au Maroc“ (2012), in: Le Maghreb et son sud: vers des liens renouvelés edited by Mansouria Mokhefi and Alain Antil, Paris, CNRS Éditions/IFRI.

„La ziyâra des tijanes sénégalais vers Fès: les diverses facettes d'un pèlerinage transnational“ (2012), HESPERIS TAMUDA, Vol. XLVII, 131-150.

Studierende aus dem subsaharischen Afrika in Marokko. Motive, Alltag und Zukunftspläne einer Bildungsmigration (2009)  Diskussionspapiere des Fachgebiets Volkswirtschaft des Vorderen Orients, Nr. 103. Berlin, Klaus Schwarz Verlag.