Fitsum S. Weldegiorgis is a PhD candidate in the Development Minerals Program. His doctoral research broadly aims to explore the issue of mining and economic development linkages in the resource-rich African countries. It seeks to critically challenge the local content and other existing mining-development linkages scholarship and analyse value addition from a new perspective. Fitsum is undertaking his PhD under the supervision of Professor Daniel Franks, Dr Evelyn Dietsche and Dr James Cust.

Prior to commencing his PhD, Fitsum led Artisanal and Small-scale Mining (ASM) work in his role as Senior Researcher for the International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED) in London. Before this, he worked as Researcher with the Centre for Social Responsibility in Mining (CSRM) for several years. He currently holds an Associate role with IIED and an Industry Fellow position with SMI.

Fitsum has a long track record of conducting applied research and strategy designs through various projects involving extensive engagements with communities, companies, and government and non-government organisations. He has led multi-stakeholder action dialogue programmes in various countries focusing on artisanal and small-scale mining to inform policy and practice through knowledge transfer and building of leadership and partnerships. He has also delivered capacity building programs to practitioners, policymakers and key stakeholder groups from a number of countries in Africa, Asia-Pacific and Latin America. Fitsum has extensive field experience in mining and development sites in Africa, Asia-Pacific, Australia and Latin America.

Fitsum holds a Master of International Economics and Finance from The University of Queensland; a Baccalaureus Commercii Honores Degree in Money and Banking from the University of the Free State, South Africa; and a Bachelor of Economics from Asmara University, Eritrea.