icon caret Arrow Down Arrow Left Arrow Right Arrow Up Line Camera icon set icon set Ellipsis icon set Facebook Favorite Globe Hamburger List Mail Map Marker Map Microphone Minus PDF Play Print RSS Search Share Trash Crisiswatch Alerts and Trends Box - 1080/761 Copy Twitter Video Camera  copyview Whatsapp Youtube

Alan Boswell

Project Director, Horn of Africa
Nairobi

Crisis Group Role

Alan is the director of the Horn of Africa Project at Crisis Group and, since 2019, hosts Crisis Group's fortnightly The Horn podcast. He joined Crisis Group in 2018 as the senior analyst for South Sudan. 

Professional Background

Alan has worked for over a decade in East Africa. He started his career as a Nairobi-based journalist in 2009, then covered Sudan's divorce into two countries as a Juba-based journalist in 2010-2011 before returning to Nairobi as an Africa correspondent, reporting from Sudan, South Sudan, Somalia, Ethiopia, Kenya, the Central African Republic, Mali, Niger and Burkina Faso. Alan has written for Foreign Affairs, Foreign Policy, Time magazine, The Atlantic, and a variety of U.S. newspapers.

Following the outbreak of civil war in South Sudan, Alan served as a formal adviser and researcher for a number of organisations, including the United Nations, USAID, U.S. Institute of Peace, European Institute of Peace, Centre for Humanitarian Dialogue, Folke Bernadotte Academy, Friedrich Egbert Stiftung and World Peace Foundation. Prior to joining Crisis Group, Alan regularly published conflict research through the Small Arms Survey and was an associate of the Conflict Research Programme at the London School of Economics.

Select Publications

In The News

9 Aug 2021
There is still no sign of a broader reset in South Sudanese politics [...] instead, the divisions just keep mounting. New York Times

Alan Boswell

Project Director, Horn of Africa
9 Jul 2021
[South Sudan] is just, unfortunately, in a much worse spot than it was 10 years ago. Whenever I talk with various diplomats from different countries [...] they all fear cutting humanitarian aid to South Sudan would just cause more misery. Both the South Sudanese and the outside world feel a bit stuck at the moment. Al Jazeera

Alan Boswell

Project Director, Horn of Africa
13 Aug 2020
Disarmament in South Sudan resembles an abusive counterinsurgency operation, not an orderly collection of arms, which the local militias often resist giving up. The New York Times

Alan Boswell

Project Director, Horn of Africa
8 May 2020
The disagreement between Kiir and Machar has endangered the gains made toward a lasting peace. Reuters

Alan Boswell

Project Director, Horn of Africa
20 Feb 2020
"[South Sudan president Kiir and former rebel leader Machar] still have much to work through, but Machar was unlikely to extract more significant concessions before forming the government. Reuters

Alan Boswell

Project Director, Horn of Africa
16 Feb 2020
[In South Sudan] the dispute over the configuration of states became a major impasse blocking the peace process from moving towards a unity government. Al Jazeera

Alan Boswell

Project Director, Horn of Africa

Latest Updates

Podcast / Africa

Sudan’s Political Impasse

This week on The Horn, Alan talks to Khartoum-based analyst Kholood Khair about Sudan’s complex political dynamics in the aftermath of an October coup that derailed the country’s transition and transformed its political landscape. 

Podcast / Africa

Putting the Horn of Africa Back Together

This week on a special episode of The Horn, Alan holds a panel discussion on mounting fragmentation in this East African region. In particular, Alan and three expert guests discuss the regional bloc Inter-Governmental Authority on Development’s failure to help shore up a crumbling regional order.

Podcast / Africa

Tigrayan Forces Retreat in Ethiopia

This week on The Horn, Alan talks to Crisis Group’s Ethiopia expert William Davison about the latest dramatic developments in the country’s civil war, after a major withdrawal by the Tigray forces. 

Podcast / Africa

The Search for an African Union Exit Strategy from Somalia

This week on The Horn, Alan talks to Crisis Group expert Omar Mahmood about the future of AMISOM, the African Union’s mission in Somalia, as its backers search for an exit strategy.