Dr. Mohammad Amir Anwar was a Post-Doctoral Researcher at the Oxford Internet Institute where he also taught the course on Economic Development in Digital Capitalism. Mohammad is also a Fellow of the World Economic Forum’s Global Future Council on Digital Economy and Society, and a Research Associate at the School of Tourism and Hospitality, University of Johannesburg. He holds a Ph.D in Geography from Trinity College Dublin. He has extensive experience of conducting research both in India and Africa.

At the OII, Mohammad was part of the ERC-funded project Geonet: investigating the changing connectivities and potentials of Sub-Saharan Africa’s knowledge economy. The project examines the geographies, drivers, and effects of Sub-Saharan Africa’s emerging information economies at a time of changing connectivity and Internet access across the region. He is the leading the research on digital outsourcing and gig economy in Africa. To this end, he conducted a year-long fieldwork in South Africa, Kenya, Nigeria, Ghana, and Uganda, conducting in-depth interviews with remote gig workers, call centre agents, business owners, self-employed digital entrepreneurs, social enterprises, private sector associations, government officials, and industry experts.

Mohammad’s work has appeared in well-regarded peer-reviewed journals, such as African Geographical Review, Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography, First Monday, and, Urban Forum. Peer-reviewed book chapters have been published by Sage and Cambridge University Press. He regularly contributes to public debate through blogs, articles for online news sources, and radio interviews. His articles have appeared in New Statesman and The Conversation. 

Mohammad has received funding from the Foundation of Urban and Regional Studies and more recently Knowledge Exchange and Impact Acceleration Award from the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) UK. His PhD was funded through Trinity Research Studentship, Trinity College, University of Dublin.

Before joining the OII he worked as a Post-Doctoral Research Fellow at the University of Johannesburg (UJ). At UJ, his work examined at the political economy of India’s engagements in Africa. He also briefly worked as a Research Assistant at Trinity College Dublin, for an Irish Research Council funded project on the role of information and communication technologies in enterprise development and industrial change in Africa.

Research interests

Globalisation, Economic Geography, African Political Economy, Digital Economy, Digital Value Creation, Future of Work, Humans of the Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence, Digital Labour, Gig Economy, Labour Movements, Employment/Unemployment, Inequality and Poverty, International Financial Institutions, Foreign Direct Investments, Global Governance, Research Design and Methods.

Positions held at the OII

  • Research Associate, March 2020-
  • Post-Doctoral Researcher, December 2015 – January 2020


Past projects

  • GeoNet: Changing Connectivities and the Potentials of Sub-Saharan Africa’s Knowledge Economy

    Participants: Professor Mark Graham, Dr Stefano De Sabbata, Nicolas Friederici, Dr Christopher Foster, Sanna Ojanperä, Dr Mohammad Amir Anwar, Dr Fabian Braesemann, Michel Wahome

    This research project is examining the geographies, drivers, and effects of Sub-Saharan Africa's emerging information economies at a time of changing connectivity and Internet access across the region.


  • GRAHAM, M. and ANWAR, M. (2019) "The global gig economy: towards a planetary labour markets?" In: 'The Digital Transformation of Labor: Automation, the Gig Economy and Welfare' Larsson, A. and Teigland, R. (eds.)Routledge Studies in Labour Economics. London: Routledge.
  • Wood, A., Graham, M. and Anwar, M.A. (2019) "Minimum Wages for Online Labor Platforms?: Regulating the Global Gig Economy" In: 'The Digital Transformation of Labor (Open Access): Automation, the Gig Economy and Welfare Larsson, A. and Teigland, R. (eds.)Routledge Studies in Labour Economics. London: Routledge.
  • Anwar, M.A. (2018) "Connecting South Africa: ICTs, Uneven Development and Poverty Debates" In: The Geography of South Africa: Contemporary Changes and New Directions Knight, J. and Rogerson, C. (eds.)World Regional Geography Book Series. Springer. 261-267.
  • Graham, M. and Anwar, M.A. (2018) "Two Models for a Fairer Sharing Economy" In: The Cambridge Handbook of Law and Regulation of the Sharing Economy Nestor Davidson, John Infranca, and MicheÌle Finck Davidson, N., Infranca, J. and Finck, M. (eds.). New York: Cambridge University Press. 328-342.
  • Graham, M. and Anwar, M.A. (2017) "Digital Labour" In: Digital Geographies Ash, J., Kitchin, R. and Leszczynski, A. (eds.). SAGE. 177-187.

Journal articles


Internet publications