CNRS Ministère des Affaires Etrangères


Accueil > The CFEE


The French Center for Ethiopian Studies (CFEE) is a French Research Institute Abroad (IFRE) of the Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs (MEAE) as well as the National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS / INSHS). This Center, based in Addis Ababa, is the result of nearly a century of scientific collaboration between France and Ethiopia.

Who are we ?
The French Home of Ethiopian Studies was established as a Research Institute Abroad of the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 1991. It succeeded the Archaeology Section of the Ethiopian Imperial Government, which was founded in 1952 upon the request of Emperor Hayle Selassie, and was composed of French experts. Even though the Ethio-French scientific cooperation originally focused on Archaeology, Prehistory and Palaeontology, the Home of Ethiopian Studies contributed to the development of Human and Social Sciences in a broad sense, with a special interest for ‘post-revolutionary’ dynamics as well as for the political construction of Ethiopia seen from its margins.

The Institute formally became the Service and Research Unit 3137 of the CNRS in 2007. It was then renamed the ‘French Centre for Ethiopian Studies’ (CFEE). The field of competence of the CFEE in terms of research funding were expanded to include Eritrea, Somaliland and Djibouti in 2008, and then South Sudan in 2012.

The Home of Ethiopian and Studies and the CFEE have been successively headed by the ethnologist Jacques Bureau (1991-1997), the historian Bertrand Hirsch (1997-2001), the historian and political scientist Gérard Prunier (2001-2006), the historian Francois-Xavier Fauvelle (2006-2009), the anthropologist Éloi Ficquet (2009-2012), the archaeologist Jean-François Breton (2012-2014), and the political scientist David Ambrosetti (2014-2018). Since September 2018, the director of the CFEE is the geographer Marie Bridonneau.

Research conducted in the CFEE concerns the fields of Earth Sciences, Palaeontology, Archaeology, Human and Social Sciences, and Environmental Sciences. The CFEE publishes the journal Annales d’Éthiopie(started in 1955), and books about Ethiopia and other countries of the Horn of Africa intended for the scientific community as well as for general readership.

In order to get more information about our past
 Amélie Chekroun, 2011, « Un archéologue capucin en Éthiopie (1922-1936) : François Bernardin Azaïs », Afriques. Débats, méthodes et terrains d’histoire, varia, online :
 Kebbédé Mikaël, Jean Leclant, 1955, « La Section d’ archéologie (1952-1955) », Annales d’Éthiopie, vol. 1, 1-8, online :