Norwegian version
Velina Ninkova

Velina Ninkova


I have conducted ethnographic research with San communities in Namibia and Botswana since 2008. My main fieldsite is the Omaheke region in east central Namibia, where I have worked with the Ju|’hoansi and published on topics related to formal and traditional education, state development, animism and relational ontology, and ethics.
I am a co-founding member of the Research and Advocacy Group for Hunter Gatherer Education (HG-Edu), established under the International Society for Hunter Gatherer Research (ISHGR). HG-Edu focuses on identifying scientifically informed approaches to issues relating to education and communicating these findings to relevant institutions.
I am currently leading a project for the documentation of the material culture of the Omaheke Ju|’hoansi, funded by the Endangered Material Knowledge Project, hosted by the British Museum.

Fields of study

Academic disciplines

Social anthropology

Subject areas

Ethnography   Indigenous peoples   International, comparative education   Indigenous rights   Ontology   Indigenous peoples' research   Ontologies   Indigenous languages   Critical Multicultural Education   Indigenous issues   Teaching about Indigenous   Indigenous Studies   Hunter-gatherers   San


Southern Africa


Botswana   Namibia

Scientific publications

Ninkova, Velina ; Abels, Monika; Kilale, Andrew Martin (2023). Playing, Working, and Learning in Flux: Perspectives from African Post-forager Childhoods. Utsa, Mukherjee (Ed.). Childhoods & Leisure. Cross-Cultural and Inter-Disciplinary Dialogues. p. 235-253. Palgrave Macmillan.

Abels, Monika; Ninkova, Velina (2023). Conducting Fieldwork with San and Hadza (Post-)Hunter-Gatherer Communities in Africa: Regulatory and Ethical Issues. 17 p. Trends in Psychology.

Ninkova, Velina (2022). Mother-tongue education for the Omaheke Ju|'hoansi in Namibia: Between policy and practice. Olsen, Torjer Andreas; Sollid, Hilde (Ed.). Indigenising Education and Citizenship: Perspectives on Policies and Practices from Sápmi and beyond. p. 237-254. Universitetsforlaget.

Ninkova, Velina (2022). The state as a whiteman, the whiteman as a /’hun: personhood, recognition, and the politics of knowability in the Kalahari. Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute. Vol. 28.

Ninkova, Velina ; Paksi, Attila (2022). Learning to aspire, aspiring to subvert: Namibian San youths' narratives about the future as mimetic work of resistance. Diaspora, Indigenous and Minority Education.

Ninkova, Velina (2020). Perpetuating the myth of the "wild Bushman": Inclusive multicultural education for the Omaheke Ju|'hoansi in Namibia. Comparative Education Review. Vol. 64.

Hays, Jennifer; Ninkova, Velina ; Dounias, Edmond (2019). Hunter-gatherers and education: Towards a recognition of extreme local diversity and common global challenges. 25 p. Hunter-Gatherer Research. Vol. 5.

Hays, Jennifer; Ninkova, Velina (2018). Vertical and Horizontal Mobility among the Ju|’hoansi of Namibia. Simonsen, Jan Ketil; Larsen, Kjersti; Engebrigtsen, Ada I. (Ed.). Movement and Connectivity: Configurations of Belonging. p. 99-130. Peter Lang Publishing Group.

Ninkova, Velina (2017). Not foragers, not not-foragers: The case of the Omaheke Ju/'hoansi. Senri Ethnological Studies.

Ninkova, Velina ; Hays, Jennifer (2017). "Walking in your grandfather's footsteps": Kinship and knowledge transmission among the Ju/'hoansi (Namibia). AnthropoChildren.

These publications are obtained from Cristin. The list may be incomplete