I arrived in Copenhagen in June of 2016, in the height of summer, with an amazing trip to Myanmar planned in July and the start of studies at the middle of August. Now that those fantastic trips have come to a close, I’m reflecting on an amazing and blessed life. 

My studies have started at Roskilde, beginning my second year in the Erasmus Mundus Global Studies program. It’s been an interesting semester to say the least, with topics ranging from security and regional posturing, to truth, justice, and reconciliation and the role of transitional justice facilitated by international organizations.

Alongside these courses have been opportunities to refresh my quantitative and qualitative methodologies, with a deeper dive into SPSS and quantitative statistical analysis, and qualitative analysis and data collection. Perfect primers as I continue to narrow in and focus on the topic for my thesis. I am continuing my research regarding civil society, advocacy, and government relationships. I am looking forward to presenting that research through a paper which focuses on the structures of mutual suspicion between the Zambian government and CSOs at the Activisms in Africa conference just next month.

I’ve also been working on, and expanding, my research on ICT4D and mobile technologies. This research is stemming from my time and experience with the Peace Corps in Zambia, including assisting in the rollout of the CDC’s SmartCare system in my clinic in Chisunka, before learning more about mobile survey, monitoring, and data collection tools which were being implemented in Southern Province for WASH-E.

Next semester will be an interesting one, with the entirety of it dedicated to the research and writing of my Master’s thesis. I haven’t quite nailed down a title, or the focus of the research, but I’m excited to get a supervisor and start closing in. 

Fall has been absolutely stunning, the colors in the trees and the cozy feel of Copenhagen is really settling in, especially as we enter into the depth of winter. Christmas markets are popping up, and a hot chocolate under the glowing lights helps to bring the spirit up.

I have been disheartened and hurt to hear of how events are unfolding in Myanmar, after having visited earlier in the year. The evidence is mounting that crimes against humanity and attempted genocide is occurring. It’s awful, and as a result I have been reluctant to write my blog reflecting on the trip. 

With more soon, I’ll sign off for now.