The team

Birgit Ricquier

Principal investigator, linguist, ULB

Specialized in Bantu historical-comparative linguistics and the Words-and-Things approach in particular, my research addresses Central-African pre-colonial history.

In BANTURIVERS, I study the linguistic history of the eastern Congo Basin and the history of fishing and navigation skills.

David Kopa wa Kopa

PhD student, linguist, ULB – UNIKIS

My research thus far concentrated on Kibudu, a Bantu language spoken in the northeast of the DRCongo.

In BANTURIVERS, I apply comparative linguistics to study past and present language contact in the eastern Congo Basin.

Daou Véronique Joiris

Anthropologist, ULB

My expertise covers the anthropology of peoples living in the Central-African rainforests, in particular hunter-gatherer communities of southern Cameroon.

In BANTURIVERS, I will act as adviser and supervisor for the anthropological part of the project.

Els Cornelissen

Archaeologist, RMCA

I am specialized in lithic materials from the Late Pleistocene and Holocene in Central Africa, and conducted excavations along the Congo River and the Lindi.

In BANTURIVERS, I will act as advisor on archaeological matters and will analyse the excavated lithic material.

Alexandre Livingstone Smith

Archaeologist, RMCA

My special field is ceramics and the anthropology of pottery technology, with a special focus on the eastern part of the DRCongo, from Upemba to Kasongo, Kindu, the Congo River, Lomami and Itimbiri.

In BANTURIVERS, I will study past and present pottery networks and exchanges.

Laurent Nieblas Ramirez

PhD student, archaeozoologist, ULB-RBINS

I am specialized in African archaeozoology, with a special focus on the study of fish remains from Central Africa.

In BANTURIVERS, I study the faunal remains and the historical artefacts, photographs, and written documents that are the witnesses of the human-river fauna interactions from the past in order to fill the gap between the archaeological and anthropological knowledge.

Elizabeth Kujath

PhD student, linguist, ULB

My experience thus far has centered on the documentation and description of Bantu languages.

In BANTURIVERS, I work with lexical data from Bantu languages of the eastern Congo Basin in view of comparative analyses.

Peter Lambertz

Anthropologist, ULB

I have a special interest in river-based mobilities, including technologies and infrastructures of transportation between Kisangani and Bumba on the Rivers Congo, Lomami and Aruwimi.

In BANTURIVERS, I look at techniques and technologies of fishing and canoe building in the longue durée of continuity and innovation.

Nicolas Nikis

Archaeologist, ULB-RMCA

As an archaeologist working mainly in Central Africa, I am particularly interested in the history of metallurgical and pottery manufacturing techniques and exchange networks over the last two millennia.

In the BantuRivers project, I study ceramics and metal objects to better understand the knowledge and object exchanges in the past.

Former team member

Shingo Takamura,
Postdoc, Anthropologist, ULB

My doctoral dissertation investigated regional market systems in the eastern DRCongo.
In BANTURIVERS, I studied fisher communities living along the Lualaba.

Collaborators in the DRC

Linguistic fieldwork and analyses:

François Abuka Balabala Alumesa,
Université de Kisangani
Nicolas Mombaya Liwila,
Université de Kisangani
Emmanuel Ngbanga Bandombele,
Université de Kisangani

Anthropological fieldwork and analyses:

Emmanuel Makoka,
student, Université de Kisangani
Victor Yaaya,
Université de Kisangani

Archaeological fieldwork/terrain archéologique:

Sabrina Kalwanika,
student, Université de Lubumbashi
Michel Komba Yendema,
Université de Kisangani
Clément Mambu Nsangathi,
Wilson Mayo Ilodiri,
Université de Kisangani
Olivier Mulumbwa Luna,
Université de Lubumbashi
Jean Paulin Ndjondjo Manga,

Members of the scientific network

Nils Bourland, bio-engineer
Royal Museum for Central Africa

Christine Cocquyt, botanist
Botanic Garden of Meise

Edmond Dounias, ethnobiologist
French National Research Institute for Sustainable Development

Tom Güldemann, linguist
Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

Daiji Kimura, anthropologist
Kyoto University

Constance Kutsch Lojenga, linguist
Universiteit Leiden – SIL International

Hans-Peter Wotzka, archaeologist
University of Cologne

Jacky Maniacky, linguist
Royal Museum for Central Africa

André Motingea Mangulu, linguist
National Pedagogic University of Kinshasa

Takanori Oishi, anthropologist
Tokyo University of Foreign Studies

Emmanuel Vreven, ichthyologist,
Royal Museum for Central Africa

Rebecca Grollemund, linguist,
University of Missouri

Louis Champion, archaeobotanist,
Institut de Recherche pour le Développement (IRD)

Alexa Höhn, archaeobotanist,
Goethe University, Frankfurt am Main

Charles Kumbatulu Sita Bangbasa, linguist,
Université de Kisangani