About us


Welcome To Rissea
The Research Institute of Swahili Studies of Eastern Africa (RISSEA) is a directorate of the National Museums of Kenya.
RISSEA was borne out of a felt need and desire to coordinate Swahili scholarship.  There has been no fully fledged institution in Kenya and the region to function as the focal point of Swahili studies. RISSEA was thus established to fill the gap and need of Swahili experts and students. Its headquarters is in Mombasa and a campus  in Lamu, expansion into other  stations will be established as the need arises.


RISSEA Goals
To promote conservation and sustainable utilization of national heritage for social and economic development while enhancing the quality of environment.


RISSEA Mission
To conduct research and training on the history, culture and language of the Swahili so as to enhance Swahili scholarship.


RISSEA Vision
To be a world class institution that undertakes Research and training on Swahili Society.


Core Mandate
According to the NMK research policy- RISSEA is mandated to undertake well coordinated, integrated and holistic studies on the Swahili society in the East African region, to document and preserve all research work on the Swahili society and culture, to revive and preserve Swahili arts, crafts and other forms of cultural expressions. Hence the mandate is given as “Generation, documentation and dissemination of Swahili knowledge, information and innovations for social and economic development.”


RISSEA Values
RISSEA will continue to uphold the following NMK values in its day to day operations:

  • Professionalism -expertise, efficiency and competence in its dealings
  • Teamwork-quality service through mutual cooperation and solidarity
  • Integrity-openness and transparency
  • Leadership-lead our stakeholders in execution of our mandate
  • Adaptability-creativity and innovativeness in handling changes
  • Environment protection- environment conservation as per national and international obligation.