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A vast amount of information is now available on the Internet, allowing us all to keep abreast of news and trends. Here is a small selection of links to websites on the Internet for those with an interest in Kenya.

The Kenya Society is not responsible for the contents of any of the websites listed here, and the inclusion of a link on the Kenya Society website is not to be taken to thereby signify endorsement of the organisation or person concerned, their views and opinions.


Newspapers, Radio, Television etc

Kenya's three dailies in English are the Daily Nation, the Standard and the Star. Launched in 2007, Business Daily provides news and analysis on business and finance 5 days a week.

Kenya's only national daily in Swahili is the Taifa Leo, which is not, as often assumed, a Swahili version of the Daily Nation, but focuses on human interest stories targeted at its core readership.

The East African offers a more considered weekly analysis of news and events. The weekly Coastweek offers lively coverage of news and events in Mombasa; it has a particularly interesting Obituaries section.

Major television channels, most offering online viewing, are KTN, NTV and Citizen TV. The venerable Kenya Broadcasting Corporation continues to offer national radio and television channels.

The Daily Nation, Business Daily, Taifa Leo and NTV are all part of the Nation Media Group, which has a portfolio of news media companies in other East African territories as well.

International news stories in Swahili can be read on the BBC Swahili news page. The BBC also offers a range of programmes on Africa which can be heard online and accessed through their Africa page.

 

Magazines and Periodicals

Launched in 2006, Chonjo is a slick bi-monthly that provides news from Lamu, Malindi and Wataamu; it is particularly useful for  news about the proposed major development planned for Lamu.

Kwani?, associated with the iconic writer Binyavanga Wainaina, is the only literary magazine of note in Kenya and continues to attract young, new literary talent. (Wainaina's classic essay How to Write about Africa is available from Granta online).

For coverage of legal/political issues, Nairobi Law Monthly continues to be well-regarded. Old Africa records social history from around East Arica with a nostalgic look back. Published thrice a year, the periodical, AwaaZ started life focussing on Kenya's communities from the Indian sub-continent, but now increasingly covers mainstream contemporary issues.

'Kenya Past and Present' published annually since 1971 has no online presence, but all articles published in its pages can be searched on AfricaBib, a periodicals bibliography database for the whole of Africa.

 

Webcams

AccessKenya provides live streaming of traffic conditions from various points in Nairobi and Mombasa.

Conditions at Wilson Airport in Nairobi can be observed on the webcam there.

For a more relaxed scene, a Lamu hotel, in association with a local airline company, provides a view from the beach at Shela, which is updated every 10 minutes.

 

Research and Analysis

The British Institute in Eastern Africa in Kilileshwa, Nairobi promotes research in the humanities and social sciences in the East Africa region; it has one of the nicest libraries in Kenya, and the Annual Lectures at the British Academy in London by the Director of BIEA are worth being invited to.

The premier body in London for analysis about Africa is the Royal African Society. It's online publication African Arguments is a rich source of information and argument. The RAS also publishes the academic journal African Affairs.

The African Studies Centre at Oxford is a focal point for inter-disciplinary research on Africa at Oxford and holds regular seminars and workshops, primarily for its graduate students and researchers.

There is no satisfactory online Kenya bibliography, but there is an extensive bibliography of publications in the humanities for the Kenya coast that has about 15000 titles from the middle of the nineteenth century to the year 2000. There is also a useful online bibliography on the South Asian diaspora and East Africa that was last updated in 2002.

The Kenya Indexing Project provides a search index of newspaper articles in 4 Kenyan English language newspapers between 1986 and 2000; copies of the actual articles can then ordered from their website.

Published in 1991 but immensely valuable to researchers is the self-explanatory Guide to Archives and Manuscripts Relating to Kenya and East Africa in the United Kingdom by Ann Thurston, who once worked at the Kenya National Archives in Nairobi. A review of this publication by historian Professor David Anderson gives an idea of the scope and value of this work.

The Kenya National Archives is one of the most highly regarded public archives in Africa, particularly for its records from the colonial era. It does not, however, currently have a website, but a very useful snapshot of the site from April 2009 is available, with viewable content and functioning internal links (Menu top left). Many colonial era records were copied for a major project undertaken with Syracuse University in the mid-1960's and the copies migrated to Syracuse in 1966 and 1967; details of their holdings are available online here and here.

 

Living in Nairobi

The website of the Kenya Alliance of Residents Associations provides an interesting insight into the issues facing Nairobi residents. For a more personal and vivid insight, a young British expatriate - and patient mother - resident in Karen writes an amusing blog at Africa Expat Wives Club.

 

Official, Diplomatic etc

The website of the Kenya High Commission in London is a useful resource, and also provides information about regaining Kenyan citizenship now that Kenyan law permits dual citizenship.

The British High Commissioner to Nairobi writes a blog as part of the Global Conversations series of the Foreign & Commonwealth Office.

An important part of the United Kingdom's official engagement with Kenya is through the work of the Department for International Development (DfID); the Department's Kenya page includes country operational plans, details of projects, budget figures, news and other useful data.

The website of the Kenyan Parliament has much useful information, including a Hansard search facility.

 

Museums and Heritage

The premier museum in Kenya is the National Museum of Kenya in Nairobi. Its website  provides links to various regional museums in Kenya. The Malindi Museum Society has an interesting site for this charming institution at Malindi.

The Karen Blixen in Rungsted in Denmark is often overlooked by fans aware of the Karen Blixen Museum in Karen, outside Nairobi.

The Ray Nestor Gallery at the Margaret Thatcher Library at Eldoret is endowed with a magnificent collection of works by Nestor (images of the works can be seen via the Index at the bottom of the website page).

In 1958, and again in 1988, the East African Women's League commissioned beautiful tapestries showing scenes of Kenya, which  provide a useful and artistic visual archive.

The Kenya Wildlife Service has an excellent site, with information about conservation, game and tourism in Kenya, as well as video clips.

There is no website for the Nairobi Railway Museum, but a brochure about the Museum can be found at the website of Kenya Railways Corporation. There is, however, a useful website about the Museum by railway enthusiasts.

Thomas G Hart, a US official stationed in Nairobi in the 1990's with an interest in architecture and conservation has written a useful piece, with illustrations, titled Gazetting and Historic Preservation in Kenya. Published in 2007 in CRM: The Journal of Heritage Stewardship, it provides an interesting overview of attempts, since 1927, to gazette structures of historic value in Kenya.

The National Museums of Kenya and the Architectural Association of Kenya have a joint initiative to encourage the public to identify and help nominate buildings in Nairobi that deserve to be gazetted (listed) for preservation. More about the initiative here.

Especially since 2007, there is a need felt to understand how the past might have fashioned Kenya's present predicament. The Ferguson Centre for African & Asian Studies in the United Kingdom, with support  from the British Academy and the Arts & Humanities Research Council , undertook a research programme that looked at how Kenyans are engaging with heritage, memory and identity. A page on their website, with further links, reports on the research.

 

Overseas cultural organisations in Kenya

Cultural activity in Kenya often goes unrecorded because of a lack of resources or organisational capacity; it is more likely that cultural production organised or facilitated by overseas cultural institutes based in Kenya is better resourced and recorded. Music, dance, drama, literary production or discussion of contemporary issues and research papers often feature in programmes developed by overseas institutes in Kenya such as the British Council, the Alliance Francaise, the Goethe Institut and the Heinrich Boll Foundation. Their websites often provide useful leads and insights into this area of activity in urban Kenya.

 

Economic Reports and Data

The Central Bank of Kenya produces regular reports on economic activity; of particular interest are their Monthly Economic Review, updates on Remittances from Diaspora and their page on Kenyans Abroad.

Useful and much interesting reporting can also be found at the Kenya Economic Update section of the World Bank website. Kenya and the IMF on the International Monetary Fund website is another rich source of information and data on Kenya's financial position. Produced jointly by the International Finance Corporation and the World Bank Doing Business - Kenya has a wealth of detailed information on topics ranging from electricity supplies and obtaining credit to investor protection and enforcement of contracts.

The CIA produces the World Factbooks series, which are useful reference guides for various countries around the world; it also produces the Kenya Factbook.

The Government of Kenya's Ministry of Tourism website has useful links to various associations involved in different sectors of the tourism economy.

Kenya is primarily an agricultural country and the websites of the Ministry of Agriculture and the Kenya Agricultural Research Institute include a huge array of helpful and interesting information, including video clips; they also act as portals for various other useful links in this area.

 

A historical curiosity

A curiosity for historians: an essay published in 1965 in the now defunct East Africa Journal by one Barak H. Obama, father of the current US President, critiquing the legendary Sessional Paper No. 10 on African Socialism.