Participatory video recordings with women in the Niger Delta 2018-2019

A 30 minute film that highlights the comparative role of women in conflict settings; the film was put together using interview data with women participants in various locations in Bayelsa and Rivers states, including sights and sounds of the area.

Conflicts in the Niger Delta have reached a political brink that has attracted significant concerns and responsiveness at both local and international levels. Women in the Niger Delta have played a key role in organising important protests and are referred to continuously in relation to the adoption of nonviolence. Grievances expressed by women in the Delta region are typically concerned with environmental degradation and underdevelopment. Ogoni women, for example, have experienced, first-hand, the violent reprisals instigated by the Nigerian security forces. Yet, the women's' voices within the context of the nonviolent aspect of the conflict are absent in the literature. This project addresses two questions: What are the conflict related experiences of the Ijaw and Ogoni women? What future roles could the women in the Niger Delta play to advance the nonviolence agenda? It highlights the comparative roles of the women in conflict settings. The roles played by women to address oil-related environmental issues need to be brought at the fore of discussions on development in the region. Specifically, these gendered implications are important for development particularly in explaining the 'how' and 'why' within the differing trajectories of the movements in the oil producing areas of Nigeria.

social inequality, oil resources, conflict, women, violence victims

Cite this dataset as:
Mai-Bornu, Z., 2020. Participatory video recordings with women in the Niger Delta 2018-2019. UK Data Service. Available from:


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Zainab Mai-Bornu
Rights Holder
University of Bath; University of Leicester


University of Bath
Rights Holder


Collection date(s):

From 1 October 2018 to 30 September 2019

Geographical coverage:

Bayelsa and Rivers states, Niger Delta geopolitical zone, Nigeria, Nigeria


Data collection method:

Women in the Niger Delta, in particular, Ogoni, Ijaw and Ogbia women are the subject’s studied in this project. The project activities were carried out in various locations in Bayelsa and Rivers states, in the South South geopolitical zone of Nigeria. Women in the region have played a key role in organising important protests Ogoni women, for example, have experienced, first-hand, the violent reprisals instigated by the Nigerian security forces along with Shell multinational as counterparts. Participants were recruited using snowballing sampling with the support of key contacts including, trusted leaders and non-governmental organisations I worked with during my PhD research. In order to produce the video on ‘Bringing Women’s Voices back In: Gender and Oil Conflicts in the Niger Delta, Nigeria’, three field trips to Nigeria were undertaken for two weeks each and followed by a one week dissemination visit at the end of the fellowship. During the initial visit, one week was spent with each women group, during which a one day preliminary workshop was held with identified participants to discuss the project, train the women to use the video cameras and answer any questions they had. Three days were spent engaging with and recording the women’s experiences and a one day video screening/group discussion was held during which each group had an initial look at the video recordings for their comment and approval. Being a woman myself, I participated in the actual recordings but, the participants decided on what information they were willing to share, in terms of the choice of nonviolence and violence in the conflicts. The footage captured during the fieldwork was edited at the Department of Social and Policy Sciences, University of Bath, United Kingdom and was presented to the participants during a one week trip back to Nigeria for their final approval and consent. Participatory video was used as a documentation tool, to document local Niger Delta women's conflict related experiences from their own perspectives in their own voices. A method that actively engaged my participants, built trust and at the same time embowed them with new skills. It broke down illiteracy barriers using voice and visuals, and was successfully adapted to local ways of cultural representation. It created a more equitable relationship between my research participants and myself. Special care was taken when interviewing and filming marginalised groups at the community level. Securing these women’s involvement was particularly important to achieving the aims of my fellowship research. Participants were required to give their informed consent before taking part in the research, and had the right to withdraw at any time. I was especially mindful of cultural, religious, gendered and other significant differences within the research population in the planning, conducting and reporting of the research.


Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC)

Bringing Women's Voices Back in: Gender and Oil Conflict in the Niger Delta

Publication details

Publication date: 8 April 2020
by: UK Data Service

Version: 1


URL for this record:

Contact information

Please contact the Research Data Service in the first instance for all matters concerning this item.

Contact person: Zainab Mai-Bornu


Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences
Politics, Languages and International Studies