Our Aims and Objectives

We are the UK association for all those who research, study and teach global development issues

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What is Development Studies

What is development studies, why it matters, how you can study and career prospects

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Our Members

We have around 1,000 members, made up of individuals and around 40 institutions

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Find out about our constitution and how we are run

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Meet our Council members and other stuff who support the running of DSA

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The DSA Conference is an annual event which brings together the development studies community

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Our conference this year is themed "Just sustainable futures in an urbanising and mobile world"

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Past Conferences

Find out about our previous conferences

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Study Groups

Our Study Groups offer a chance to connect with others who share your areas of interest

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Students and ECRs

Students and early career researchers are an important part of our community

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Our book series with OUP and our relationship with other publishers

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North-South Research

A series of workshops exploring North-South interdisciplinary research with key messages and reports

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Membership Directory

Find out who our members are, where they are based and the issues they work on

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Methodology & Preparation

6-8 July 2022: Online Conference at University College London

Just sustainable futures in an urbanising and mobile world

Justice and equity, just futures in an urbanising and mobile world, facing a climate and ecological crisis in a pandemic or post-pandemic context

All pre-recorded presentations by accepted authors in paper-based panels should be uploaded by now. If you are running late with this task, please see here for instructions on how to create and upload your pre-recorded presentations. This must be done ASAP or you risk being withdrawn from the conference programme!

To view the uploaded pre-recorded material please see our short video on how to do this.

Following the success of DSA’s online Annual Conferences in 2020 and 2021, DSA2022 will once more be held online. This will enable us to maintain the high levels of participation of recent years, particularly of colleagues based in the global South. It will also mean we can ensure equity of experience and a small carbon footprint.

However, DSA2022 will adopt a range of different approaches in order to get the most from the online format and make it even more inclusive. There is growing evidence about zoom fatigue, shorter online concentration capacity and the need for online sessions to be shorter. Lengthy synchronous online attendance has been proven to have negative effects on our wellbeing. In contrast, there is extensive pedagogical evidence to show that the quality of engagement between participants in synchronous sessions is greatly improved when all have been able to access the content to be discussed in advance and that this approach is more inclusive of a broader range of learning styles.

Download the DSA2022 Delegate PDF Booklet


Inspired by the digital pedagogy expertise of our conference hosts at UCL, we want to reduce the downsides of spending too many passive hours on screen and maximise the time we have together to discuss and debate new evidence, approaches and ideas, from across different time-zones. DSA2022’s methodology will therefore exemplify some of the values underpinning the theme, including: equitable access, global engagement, knowledge exchange (across disciplines and geographies), and climate action.

All sessions will be limited to 40 minutes, with panel convenors free to choose from a range of formats, including paper-based sessions and a variety of different kinds of workshop, including roundtables and other more interactive formats. Importantly, colleagues wishing to convene paper-based sessions must ensure that participants upload their papers and/or presentations in advance, as there will be no time for full presentations during the conference itself.

Such an approach will allow us to timetable the conference to suit a wide range of time zones to maximise global engagement and to support flexibility for delegates, particularly those with differing abilities and/or caring responsibilities.

Paper-based panels
Contributors will upload their materials three weeks before the conference itself. These contributions can take multiple forms, including video, video with slides, slides with audio, podcast/audio only and text only. The input should be between 8 and 12 minutes (or equivalent in words, i.e. between 1,200 and 1,800 words, excluding references). Speakers are encouraged to include a question aimed at provoking discussion at the synchronous session. We will also ask presenters who submit videos/audio recordings to either submit a written version OR edit the automatic captions (using very easy-to-follow instructions). This will enhance accessibility.

All session participants will be encouraged to access these materials in advance and to pose their questions in the online space allotted for this. During the online session, each panellist will start with a two-minute pitch that highlights their main contribution and repeats the question they want participants to consider. Convenors will need to ensure that a nominated chair/discussant has read across all contributions to the panel and can field any questions/comments submitted by participants in advance as well as those asked during the session. This approach will enable us to focus our time together on discussion and debate.

This format can be adapted for brief roundtables, focused discussions or other more interactive formats within a 40 minute slot dedicated to the discussion of a particular issue. Convenors can invite submissions from people who would like to contribute, invite specific speakers or leave the session open for anyone who would like to discuss the topic of the session. Convenors must submit a proposal about the contents of the session and also about how they plan to use the allocated slot. In exceptional circumstances, convenors may request two slots for their workshop as long as this is justified in relation to a methodology aimed at ensuring a high degree of interaction and discussion.


Instructions on preparing your presentations and uploading them to the programme

How to produce a PDF of your paper/presentation

Once created in Word/Powerpoint/OpenOffice, choose Save as/Export and select the PDF option.

This file can be uploaded into the paper abstract system as per this document.

How to record your presentation as a video file and upload to YouTube


By far the easiest way in 2022 to record a presentation, which captures a video of the presenter, the audio of the presenter and possibly their slides, images or other video material, is to use a web meeting software, such as Zoom or Google Meet or MS Teams. Most colleagues have one of these programmes on their device(s) and some experience in using them. DSA2022 will anyway make use of Zoom, so we expect all delegates to have Zoom installed.


Having opened the web meeting software, start a meeting (alone). Ensure that the webcam and microphone are working. Apply a virtual background if you so wish. If you are planning to use slides, have them prepared and ready in Slide Show mode. You may wish to start sharing screen from the outset, or only share screen at certain points in your presentation. Whatever works best for you. Set the meeting to record to your computer. You can then start presenting and your image, sound and slides will be captured in a nicely compressed mp4 video.
See these easy to follow instructions (PDF)


We’d advise giving this a run-through before attempting the full recording. In preparing to record, we’d also suggest viewing the Distribute website (and its excellent videos with full guidance on what to consider)

Where to upload

You cannot upload your presentation video directly into Cocoa, the NomadIT abstract management system used by DSA. You must instead upload the file to a video-sharing website such as YouTube or Vimeo. We would recommend using YouTube as it also automatically closed captions your recording, helping with accessibility (see below). If you use Vimeo then you may have to enter the captions yourself. (Alternatively you could upload them as a PDF in the abstract system.)

Create a free account in either Vimeo or YouTube if you don’t already have one. If you already have a Gmail/Google account then you already have a YouTube account. Once you’ve created your account/channel, you can upload the video you have recorded, from your desktop to the cloud, adding the title and other metadata. This webpage (not ours) clearly explains both how to upload a video to YouTube from mobile (item 1) and from computer (item 2). You will need to set the video visibility as either unlisted (not searchable) or public.

Once uploaded, you can copy the URL of that video. This is what can be inserted into the paper abstract system as per this document. We’d ask that you leave the video available via YouTube for three months after initial upload, so that delegates can access conference content even after the live events of the summer.


Please bear in mind that when creating a recorded presentation you should also try to be as accessible as possible – see our accessibility policy.


If you have problems with this process, please contact the conference administrators for advice.

How to handle audio files

Audio files

The abstract management system cannot take audio file (mp3) uploads nor embed existing cloud-based audio files. So if you prefer not to record a video, but produce an mp3, this will then need converting to an mp4 and uploading to YouTube/Vimeo as above, so that it can be embedded in the conference system.

However please note that while you can convert mp3 to mp4, if the mp4 does not have a video track (an image added to your sound) it will not be accepted by these platforms. So you will need to add a still image in a video editor (such as iMovie, Photos app, etc).

If you need assistance with this latter process, please contact the conference administrators for assistance.

Please also ensure you have read through our information for delegates page, especially if you are a convenor or author, so that you can see what you should do in the final weeks ahead of the conference.