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Meet the Expert: Sada Mire

Meet the Expert: dr. Sada Mire

Dr Sada Mire is a Swedish-Somali archaeologist, art historian and presenter and currently holds a position of assistant professor at the faculty of Archaeology in Leiden. Her main research interests are archaeological and anthropological theory and practice and cultural heritage studies. She specialises in the archaeology, ethnography and history of the peoples of North-East Africa, particularly Somalia, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Djibouti and Kenya.

Lately she is nominated for 'Outstanding Educational Achievement' at the International Somali Awards (voting until February 15th).  

Sada Mire is currently involved in several research projects:

  1. 1.'Divine Fertility: Practices, Materiality and Sacred Landscapes in the Horn of Africa' (2016-2020), that examines the notion of sacred fertility and sacred landscapes, associated rituals and material culture, both archaeological and ethnographic manifestations in the Horn of Africa.

  2. 2.'Heritage under Threat' (2016-2021), exploring heritage under threat and the impact of current global challenges such as environment, war, migration, poverty, conflict and natural crises. The threats to heritage are illustrated with case studies from around the world, a unique data that illuminates this multifaceted issue.

    Within this theme, Sada Mire is also the instructor for the Coursera Course 'Heritage under Threat' (next course starts on February 4th).

  3. 3.'Somaliland Rock Art- Laas Geel, Dhagah Kureh and Dhagah Nabi Gelay', a research project focusing on preserving heritage of this part of the Horn of Africa digitally and safely share it with the world.


Her research led to international media attention and last December Sada Mire hosted a tv programme 'Faces of Africa: Lessons from My Heritage' by CGTN Africa.

The BBC also made a radio documentary while Sada was doing research in Laas Geel named 'Stories of Rocks' where she is exploring how ancient cave paintings in Somaliland can be protected from terrorists.