Fenneke Reysoo

Fenneke REYSOO

Chargée d'enseignement et de recherche retraitée
Spoken languages
English, Dutch, French, German, Arabic
Areas of expertise
  • Gender, women and public policies
  • Human rights
  • Religion and politics
  • Terrorism, crime
  • Agriculture, land and rural development
  • Development, cooperation and aid policies
Geographical Region of Expertise
  • Middle East
  • North Africa
  • West Africa
  • Southeast Asia


PhD, Université Radboud, Nimègue (Pays-Bas)

Dr Fenneke Reysoo holds degrees in Anthropology (MA University of Neuchâtel, Switzerland, PhD Radboud University Nijmegen (NL)) and in Development Studies (ITC, Enschede (NL)). Her career in Academia started in 1982 as part of the encompassing research programme  on “Forms of cultural dominance in the Western Circum-Mediterranean” under the leadership of Prof. Anton Blok. Her PhD research project on “Morocan Pilgrimages” aimed at understanding forms and practices of cultural dominance between men and women, and orthodoxy and local forms of Islam and how these were played out in the various political and religious power games during the 20th century.

During the 1990s, she continued conducting research in Morocco, as well as in non-Arab muslim and other countries on various topics: “Women and Islam” (1991-1994, Maghreb, Egypt), “Women, Health and Population Issues” (1993-2001, Bangladesh, Morocco, Mali, Mexico), « Incentives and reproductive rights of women in Bangladesh » (1994), “Knowledge transfer on contraceptive methods and sexuality education among three generations women in Morocco” (1998), “Health issues among Moroccan immigrant women in the Netherlands” (1999), “Masculinities in Mexico” (2000),  “Gender and reproductive health in francophone West-Africa” (2004-2006), and “The Revival of Islam in Burkina Faso” (2009).

In the early 2010s she conducted research on gender equality in agriculture and rural development ( PNR60/FNS research on “Gender, generations and equality in Swiss agricultural family enterprises” (FNS, 2010-2014), Interreg funded research on “On family break-downs in micro-entreprises in the Swiss-French Jura” (2013-2015) (with researchers from IHEID, AGRIDEA)  and a R4D (SNSF/SDC) research project on “Gendered agrarian transformations, land commercialization and the right to food” (2015-2017, Cambodia and Ghana)).

Her current and prospective interests in teaching and research link her expertise on women, gender and Islam with emerging engagement of young women and men in extreme forms of violence and terrorism.

Her teachings have concerned anthropology and gender issues at BA and MA levels (Radboud University, Nijmegen, Leiden University, University of Amsterdam, Université de Neuchâtel, Rhodes University Grahamstown, South Africa (visiting professor), Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Genève) as well as qualitative methodology at BA, MA and PhD levels (Radboud University Nijmegen, Universidad Autonoma Mexicana –Iztapalapa (visiting professor), CERES (PhD Research School for Resource Studies for Development, Netherlands), RCI (PhD Research Capacity Initiative) South-Africa, Université Mohammed V, Rabat (Morocco), ISPED Bordeaux(France)).

She is member of the Board of Directors of Helvetas-Swiss Intercooperation, of the Scientific Board of the Netherlands Institute in Morocco (NIMAR, 2006-2012), and directed the CUSO doctoral programme Gender Studies from 2012-2018.

In 2000 she received the Jenny Smelik award for her book “Karima. Nooitgeschreven brief aan mijn vader” that relates the life story of a young Moroccan migrant woman in the Netherlands, which will be produced as a fictional movie in 2019.



  • Gender, development, anthropology, human rights, religion and politics, agriculture and rural development (food security and right to food), qualitative methodology, CAQDAS
Fenneke Reysoo