Marianna Bettis bilde

Marianna Betti

  • E-postMarianna.Betti@uib.no
  • Besøksadresse
    Fosswinckelsgt. 6
  • Postadresse
    Postboks 7802
    5020 BERGEN

The tentative title of the PhD thesis is “Oil and the Logics of Expectation and Trust in Turkana”.


In this PhD study, I propose to investigate the complex encounter of the different groups who are involved in the recent discovery of hydrocarbons in Turkana, Northern Kenya. I will also map the attitudes of Turkana people in light of the allure of oil development, their expressions of hope, worry and trust. Inspired by previous research in the region, I will explore if traditional social norms continue to inform the social behaviors, livelihood strategies and mechanisms of survival of Turkana people when confronted with the inevitable socio-economic controversies which oil might stir. I will examine if these strategies become more evident when they confront extraneous sets of logics like those of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and religious groups, the Kenyan State apparatus and the oil company operating in Turkana, Tullow.

The study has the potential for practical impact too. It will identify if there are individual or social actions, enterprises or movements that have the potential to create trust, knowledge and strengthen community ties to help Turkana people survive and protect themselves, and, at the same time, contribute and even benefit from the new oil development in their region.




Betti, Marianna.

Encounters and expectations: A case of syncretic oil complex in Turkana, Kenya. Workshop. Corporate entanglements: Citizenship, Governance and Transnational Companies at Key Sites of Neoliberal Globalization. Utrecht University, Utrecht, NL. 11-12.12.2018.

Betti, Marianna.

Blood, meat, oil and the generative power of moving resources. EASA 2018: Staying, Moving Settling. Stockholm, SE. 14.-17.08.2018.

Betti, Marianna.

Claiming the “Cradle of Mankind”: strategies to power and access amongst oil companies and local political elites in Turkana. American Anthropological Association Annual Meeting 2016. Minneapolis, USA. 16.-20.11.2016.

Betti, Marianna. 
Health and Well-being along the Shores of Lake Turkana. MAGic 2015 Conference. Sussex, UK. 09.-11.09.2015.

Betti, Marianna. 
Right to Work and Rights at Work: egalitarian practices and paradoxes in Italy in a time of crisis. Second ISP-workshop: The Anthropology of Uncertainty. NTNU, Trondheim, NO. 30.-31.10.2014.

Betti, Marianna.

Endurance and Social Growth among sedenterized Turkana. EASA 2012. Nanterre, FR. 10.-13.07.2012.

Spring 2018, Emne ansvarlig for SANT285-1 "The Anthropology of Oil", UiB

Fall 2017 Emne ansvarlig for SANT100 "Invitasjon til sosialantropologi", UiB

Spring 2016 Teaching assistant for SANT102 "Sosialt liv i globalt perspektiv" and SANT220«Anthropology, Intervention and Development», UiB.

Fall 2014 Teaching assistant AFR1012 “Anthropology of Africa: regional perspectives”, NTNU

Spring 2011 Teaching assistant SANT215 “Comparative Ethnography” and SANT220 «Anthropology, Intervention and Development», UiB.

Fall 2010 Teaching assistant SV100 “Sociological Approaches”, SANT104 «Culture, Meaning and Communication», and SANT105 «Expressions and Disguises of Power».UiB.

Fall 2004 Teaching assistant ANTHRO8-1 «Introduction to Anthropology». UCLA.



  • Betti, Marianna. 2019. The Academic Legacy of a Concerned Anthropologist. Review of Contrarian Anthropology. The Unwritten Rules of Academia by Laura Nader. Public Anthropologist. 1.
  • Betti, Marianna. 2018. What lies below: the politics of resource conflict in Turkana, Kenya. 9, sider 159-176. I:
    • Szolucha, Anna. 2018. Energy, Resource Extraction and Society Impacts and Contested Futures. Routledge. 236 sider. ISBN: 978-0-815-38015-3.
  • Betti, Marianna. 2018. Well-Being, Healthcare, and Development in Turkana: Pre- and Post-Devolution. 9, sider 153-176. I:
    • Fyhn, Håkon; Aspen, Harald; Larsen, Anne Kathrine. 2018. Edges of Global Transformation: Ethnographies of Uncertainty. Lexington Books. 220 sider. ISBN: 978-1-4985-8407-4.

Se fullstendig oversikt over publikasjoner i CRIStin.

Dictionary Entry

2020 (with C. Gianella) "Water". Dictionary entry. In: De Lauri, A. ed. Humanitarianism: Keywords. Brill, Leiden.

Book Review

2019 (in press) "The Academic Legacy of a Concerned Anthropologist. Review of Contrarian Anthropology. The Unwritten Rules of Academia by Laura Nader" Public Anthropologist, Vol. 2, Issue 2.

Book chapters

2018a. What Lies Below: the politics of resource conflict in Turkana, Kenya. In Szolucha, Anna ed. Energy, Resource Extraction and Society. Impacts and contested futures.Routledge. https://www.routledge.com/Energy-Resource-Extraction-and-Society-Impacts-and-Contested-Futures/Szolucha/p/book/9780815380153

2018b. Well-Being, Healthcare and Development in Turkana: Pre and Post Devolution. In Fyhn H., H. Aspen and A.K. Larsen Edges of Global Transformation Ethnographies of Uncertainty.Rowman and Littlefield. https://rowman.com/ISBN/9781498584081/Edges-of-Global-Transformation-Ethnographies-of-Uncertainty

Betti, Marianna
«Report Workshop: a position paper». Trondheim: NTNU 2013 10 s. 

Betti, Marianna; Haram, Liv
The Hot Lava Edge of Cultural Flows; Annotated Bibliography. Trondheim: NTNU 2013 62 s. 

Betti, Marianna
The Children of Eve. Change and Socialization Among Sedentarized Turkana Children and Youth. Bergen: Institutt for sosialantropologi, Universitetet i Bergen 2010 100 s.