Martha Saavedra has been with the Center for African Studies since 1993. She received a PhD and MA in a Political Science from the University of California, Berkeley and a BA in International Studies from Rhodes College. She has taught at St. Mary’s College of California, Ohio University, the Escuela de Estudios Universitarios Real Madrid, and at UC Berkeley, including in Global Studies, the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute and the Graduate School of Journalism. Her research has ranged from agrarian politics and ethnic conflict in the Nuba Mountains of Sudan, to representations of Africa in Chinese popular culture, and to gender, development, and sport in various Africa countries. She most recently worked on a collaborative project on sport and development in Cape Verde, Nepal and Timor-Leste, and on African athletic migration to the European Union. She has been on the editorial boards of Soccer and Society; Sport in Society; Sociology of Sport Journal; and Impumelelo: The Interdisciplinary Journal of Sports in Africa. She is also on the board of Sport Africa and Soccer Without Borders. A veteran of Title IX battles, she has played soccer for most of her life and coached boys teams for over 15 years. In 2021, Martha received the African Studies Association Outstanding Service Award.
Gender, Sport, Agrarian politics, development