This year’s Congress of the Somali Studies International Association will be held on the 23-25th July 2018. It will be held at the Hargeysa Cultural Centre as well as the University of Hargeisa, which is co-hosting the Congress with the Redsea Cultural Foundation. The programme of events can be found at the link below:


Call for papers update

The suggested deadline for paper submissions will be the 15th July 2018. If you have a paper that has been accepted, please submit your final paper by this date.


There are a few hotels in Hargeysa, which we have partnered with to offer SSIA attendees discounted rates. Mansoor, Imperial and Damal are all offering a 10% discount; all three hotels are centrally located and with easy access to SSIA congress event locations.

Prices for single rooms start from:
Mansoor – $42
Imperial – $20
Damal – $40

Updated Travel Information

Before your departure:

If you are visiting Somaliland, and are not a Somaliland national, of Somaliland descent, you will need an entry visa. Visas can take as little as 1-2 hours, however it is advised to leave adequate time, should it take slightly longer. Below are the details of how and where to apply for visas.

London, UK:
You will need to submit a completed Visa Application Form with 1 passport sized photo, your valid passport and the visa fee. (Visa application can be found at, a PDF version is in a separate attachment). Visas are £30 for single entry valid for 3 months and £60 for multiple entries valid for 6 months. Visas can only be paid for in cash (GBP).

234-236 Whitechapel Road, London E1 1BJ.
Telephone number: 020 3441 2631.

Nairobi, Kenya:
You can apply for your visa at our office in Nairobi. We will issue your visa when you submit your completed Visa Application Form with 1 passport size photo, your valid passport and the Visa fees, which are $75 for single entry valid for 1 month and $135 for multiple entries valid for 3 months. Form of payment is cash in Dollars or Kenya shilling.

Somaliland Liaison office Nairobi
Utumishi Co-op House, 5th Floor, Mamlaka Road
near Serena Hotel, Nairobi Kenya
Call: +254 20 528 1047

Visa on arrival:
Alternatively we can prepare a permission letter to enter Somaliland, which will allow you to receive a visa on arrival. We will be taking visa requests until the 1st July, please send these in as early as possible. For this type of visa we require the following: a photocopy of your passport & your flight details (if you haven’t booked your flights provisional dates will do). Please note the visa on arrival option is only available to those traveling via air.

Diplomatic passport

If you are traveling on a diplomatic passport you will need to contact Somaliland immigration independently.

There are a few hotels in Hargeysa, which we have partnered with to offer SSIA attendees discounted rates. Mansoor, Imperial and Damal are all offering a 10% discount; all three hotels are centrally located and with easy access to SSIA congress event locations.

What to expect upon arrival in Hargeysa, Somaliland:

Upon arrival at Egal International airport, you will be asked to stand in the line marked for foreign nationals. Your picture will be taken, your fingerprints scanned and your passport will be stamped. After this you will walk to a second window where you will be asked to a pay 60 USD fee to enter the country. Please be sure to have this fee in USD as there are no currency change services in this area of the airport.

Moving away from the second section, you will enter the luggage reclaim area. Bags are placed in the center of the hall, locate your luggage and proceed to the exit, where you will be asked to present luggage tags matching the tags on the luggage you’ve retrieved.

Please keep your invoices with you to give me later, along with the boarding pass and tags for your bags; this will be helpful in case your luggage is delayed.

I will be waiting for you outside the gate upon your arrival. Please look for me holding a sign saying “SSIA Guests.”

Advised dress:
It is preferred that women cover hair and generally be covered up during your stay here. Loose clothing that is either long sleeves or ¾ sleeves is fine. Loose fitting trousers are acceptable with a long top/ tunic. It is fairly humid in Hargeysa during this time of year but generally it is cooler at night and mornings.

In Somaliland there are no restrictions as per law to show your vaccination card on arrival, but it is preferable to have updated vaccines for all the normal illnesses. Please refer to the CDC, WHO or foreign office websites for recommended vaccines.

Call for papers closed: acceptance due to 1 June

Due to the high number of papers submitted last days, we are revising the structure of the panels. If you submitted a paper, you will be receiving a confirmation of acceptance by 1st June.  The letter contains also all logistical information, fees and Visas procedure.

If you have submitted a paper, and do not receive an email from the committee by 1 June, please write to

The Committee

Call for papers – SSIA 2018

SSIA is pleased to announce its call for papers for the SSIA 2018 Congress held in Hargeysa. We invite submission of proposals for papers falling within any of the themes listed below. However, if your proposal does not fit within one of the listed themes, please indicate that your proposal falls under ‘unspecified’ themes. We will try our best to consider your paper alongside any others similar paper and create a new theme if received a sufficient number of unspecified theme proposals.

The deadline for paper submissions is 15th April 2018, and we aim to notify you as to whether your paper has been accepted or not by 30thApril.Please use the form provided for panel submission.

Check the panels approved here: Proposed themes and panels

Scholarships available

The organisers of the SSIAC2018 announces the availability of 7 full scholarships to junior scholars based in East Africa and 3 full scholarships to junior scholars based outside of the East Africa region. Junior scholars include also PhD students.

The scholarships will cover the cost of attending the congress, including the traveling cost, accommodation, congress fee and cultural excursion costs.

For further details, please write to