DSA Members' news
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ODID academics are actively contributing to debates on the implications of COVID-19 for the global South; you can read all the commentary in our Development in the time of Coronavirus forum. OPHI have produced a briefing outlining how their Multidimensional Poverty Index can help inform responses to the pandemic and the Refugee Studies Centre has also started a COVID-19 resources section and blog.
In addition, the RSC’s Public Seminar Series this term will be on ‘Strengthening refugee-led humanitarian response during the COVID-10 pandemic’. Seminars will take place online on Wednesdays at 5pm BST.
DfID has awarded £9.4 million in new funding to Young Lives to enable them to continue their longitudinal study into children and youth around the world. Read more.
Oxford Development Studies (ODS), the multidisciplinary peer-reviewed journal edited from ODID, has relaunched, with revised aims and scope, a restructuring of its editorial advisory board to increase inclusion of both women and scholars based in the global South, and a new cover design. Read more.
The Refugee Studies Centre announce two new books this month: The Global Governed? Refugees as Providers of Protection and Assistance by Kate Pincock, Alexander Betts and Evan Easton-Calabria examines how refugees mobilise to act not just as recipients but as providers of social protection and assistance; On an Empty Stomach by Tom Scott-Smith explores the practical techniques humanitarians have used to manage and measure starvation, from Victorian ‘scientific' soup kitchens to space-age, high-protein foods.
Tom Scott-Smith has also been chosen by the Arts and Humanities Research Council and the BBC to be one of ten 'New Generation Thinkers'. He will work with them to develop exciting new ways to take research to wider audiences. Read more.
A new open access paper in the Area Development and Policy Journal from Seth Schindler, Tom Gillespie, Niki Banks et al. looks at the processes of deindustrialization in cities of the Global South and how it differs from that seen in OECD countries.
Professor Richard Heeks and colleagues from the Fairwork project have released a report on the plight of gig economy workers across the world since the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic. A summary can also be read on the GDI blog.
The ESID Research Centre have produced a two-part blog on The Politics of Responding to Covid-19 in Developing Countries.
Recent online events
Alessandra Mezzadri participated in a workshop on the Laws of Social Reproduction, organised by Prabha Kotiswaran at King's College and hosted on Zoom on the 21st April.
Romina Istratii facilitated a discussion on COVID-19, international research challenges and what funders and institutions can do to facilitate, held online on 30th April as part of a series of events coordinated by SOAS and Oxford to explore ethical and practical challenges around development-oriented research.
The passing of an intellectual giant
We are saddened to announce the passing of Professor Thandika Mkandawire. He was a brilliant and creative thinker, a generator of great ideas, and, above all, a wonderful person. His work inspired many and has shaped the way we understand African development. We will all miss him dearly. Our thoughts go out to his wife and sons. Read the LSE Condolonces piece here.
"With him we are witnessing the passing of an intellectual giant in Development Studies." - Professor James Putzel
Celebrating Women in ID
We celebrated International Women's Month 2020 by interviewing three women in the department at different stages of their academic career: Dr Kate Meagher, Dr Tiziana Leone and Dr Sandra Sequeira. Listen to the podcast series here.
Dr Sequeira and Dr Weigel on corruption
As part of LSE's award-winning IQ podcast series, Dr Sandra Sequeira and Dr Jonathan Weigel were interviewed to share their research findings for an episode exploring the effects of corruption on a nation’s economic prosperity and reputation. Listen to this episode here.
The Firoz Lalji Centre for Africa have published a new series on ethics and identity in the process of fieldwork. Although the series is focussed on Africa, it’s can also be applied to qualitative research more generally. Read the series here.
Professor Kathryn Hochstetler on Chico Mendes
Professor Kathryn Hochstetler was interviewed by BBC Radio 4 for their programme on the assassination of Chico Mendes as part of their Green Originals series. Listen to the programme here.
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The DPU welcomes two new 'Honorary Professors' after titles granted by UCL
The DPU are delighted to welcome Prof Caroline Moser and Prof Carolyn Stephens after UCL grants the title 'Honorary Professor'.
Participatory Spatial Intervention - Report and video from DPU-led collaborative project published
The DPU's Andrea Rigon led a research team formed of UCL staff, the charity CatalyticAction and citizen scientists that aimed to consider how participatory design and a diversity lens can help address vulnerabilities in Bar Elias, Lebanon.
Life Stories from Bar Elias - video produced as part of research co-conducted by DPU's Camillo Boano
The film is part of a film series that aims to tell the life stories of people from the field, giving insights to the research conducted by the RELIEF centre and engaging the audience to want to learn more and get in touch with the researchers.
DPU co-edited book 'Urban Claims and the Right to the City' published and available for download
The book 'Urban Claims and the Right to the City: Grassroots Perspectives from Salvador da Bahia and London' was co-edited by DPU's Julian Walker with Marcos Bau Carvalho (UFBA) and Ilinca Diaconescu (Just Space), and has been published by UCL Press
The SLURC/DPU Learning Alliance welcomes six interns
The interns will be joining this years’ remote research with the MSc Environment and Sustainable Development programme.
CIDT response to COVID19
Find out how we are working in light of the global pandemic, and some thoughts on the impact on civil society and international development.
Advances in Independent Forest Monitoring are bringing change to the forests of the Congo Basin
Through the CV4C project, we have been at the forefront of civil society led independent monitoring of forests, governance and land-use change processes in the Congo Basin. This information leaflet recalls several stories of real, meaningful and lasting change, realised through years of collaboration, hard work and innovation.
Spotlight on CIDT’s work in Africa
CIDT was invited to showcase its projects and impact in Africa to the UK’s Ambassador for Africa during a Trade Commission visit organised by the Department for International Trade. We have collated an interactive map detailing our recent capacity strengthening work in over 25 sub-Saharan African countries.
Workshop on Effective Communications gives new skills to African Union staff
CIDT staff facilitated this 3-day training workshop in Addis Ababa, focused on delivering the skills that AU staff need to communicate with impact and diplomacy as their institutional reform positions them to deliver ambitious plans for Africa.
Europe gives grant of €2.5m for rise of China research project
Professor Giles Mohan gains a European Research Council Advanced Grant for his research project REDEFINE (Re-orienting development: the dynamics and effects of Chinese infrastructure investment in Europe).
Geography and Migration Professor honoured for outstanding research
IDII’s Professor Parvati Raghuram, Principal Investigator in the Decolonising Peace Education in Africa project, has been elected as a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences.
Local health services deprived of tools to fight COVID-19, say academics
Maureen Mackintosh and David Wield are signatories to a Guardian letter attacking the institutional fragmentation in public health since 2012.
COVID-19: the academics’ view
Our partner Innogen has published a compilation of its recent research relevant to the coronavirus situation, including: lessons from earlier epidemics; the true benefits of vaccine; and the key importance local health care capabilities.
‘What we need in this situation is a focus on the fundamental economics of industrial innovation’
Professor Smita Srinivas and Pritika Rao apply the insights of their research into cancer care in India to the current pandemic.
The work of the Core Land Support Team for DFID’s LEGEND Programme (Land: Enhancing Governance for Economic Development), led by NRI’s Julian Quan, has been completed. The CLST has focussed on research and knowledge management, assistance to DFID country land programmes, management of a challenge fund for innovation in land governance, and supporting a network of global civil society partners. For more details see here. The Land Portal and NRI have also created a set of webpages highlighting eight key practical lessons on responsible land investment drawing together resources and products from pilot partnership projects, DFID’s land support team and LEGEND partners.
All publications from LEGEND are available on the Land Portal. These include publications authored or co-authored by Julian Quan on: Investing Responsibly in Agricultural Land; Securing Land Rights at Scale; Land Governance and Inclusive Business in Agriculture; and Options for Securing Tenure and Documenting Land Rights in Mozambique. There are also thee Thematic Case Studies from responsible land investment pilots in sub-Saharan Africa.
NRI’s Ravi Kumar has been collaborating with Catalyst Management Services of India on scoping research for planning interventions to reduce ocean plastics in Indian Marine Waters. For a news item see here, for the research report see here.
A number of NRI researchers have contributed short comments and thinkpieces on COVID-19 and sustainable development.
As of January 2020, Dr Jonathan Fisher has taken on the role of Head of Department, succeeding Professor Fiona Nunan who had been Head of Department from 2014.
Congratulations to Professor Nic Cheeseman, Dr Susan Dodsworth and their colleagues for winning the President's Medal of the Market Research Society (MRS), one of the organisation's most prestigious awards.
Contributions sought for Routledge Handbook on Livelihoods in the Global South, edited by Fiona Nunan, Clare Barnes and Sukanya Krishnamurthy. Find out more here.
In May 2019, SIID hosted a number of events on the theme of decolonisation:
SIID PGR Conference & Annual Lecture
Earlier in May we welcomed over 30 students attending the SIID Annual Postgraduate Conference. This event was organised by MA/MSc and PhD students from the University of Sheffield and was attended by postgraduates studying at Universities in Tanzania, China, Norway, Portugal, UK, Sweden, Germany and Hungary. In it’s 10th year, the topic of the conference was ‘Decolonising Development? Challenges, Innovations and Practices.’ This event coincided with the SIID Annual Lecture and we were delighted to welcome Professor Uma Kothari to deliver a lecture on: "Decolonising Knowledge and Forging Solidarity: Disrupting colonial representations, narratives and imaginaries". More details can be found on the SIID website.
Research Ethics: Developing Best Practice for Researching in the Global South
More than 40 researchers at different career stages attended this two day workshop at the University of Sheffield over 20th - 21st May. The workshop consisted of eight facilitated break-out sessions for group work. A range of topics were discussed and part of the workshop was recorded as material will be edited for teaching purposes. If you are interested in hearing more please get in contact with the workshop organizer Dr Daniel Hammett. More details on the SIID website as well.
UEA is leading a Global Research Translation Award (GRTA) project called Meeting the SDGs: creating innovative infrastructures and policy solutions to support sustainable development in Global South communities. The GRTA is funded through the Global Challenges Research Fund’s (GCRF) Innovation and Commercialisation Programme, developed to fast-track promising research findings into real-world solutions.
The £1.36 million project comprises four interconnected sub-projects:
· Child malnutrition: working with partners in Brazil, Jordan, Malaysia and Thailand to develop bespoke micronutrient supplements for children with local industries in each of the countries, and using creative writing and film-making to engage families on the importance of a balanced diet for child growth and development.
· Sustainable Food Systems: addressing food and nutrition insecurity in India, working with communities, especially women's groups, youth groups and students to generate and share knowledge on food production choices and technologies, diets and consumption practices, using digital technology and participatory methods.
· Family Literacy: working with partners in Ethiopia, Nepal, Malawi and the Philippines to develop a more sustainable, relevant and 'bottom-up' approach to family literacy by embedding literacy in people's everyday activities and using indigenous learning practices that can influence family well-being and livelihoods.
· Microplastics: working with partners in Malaysia to build a network of academics, industry partners and policy-makers to identify and quantify the distribution of microplastics and assess the potential environmental risks, by scaling up a simple monitoring methodology with a multilingual video manual to aid its use and ensure consistency of practice for data comparisons.
Follow us @grta_project.
Institutional member news
IGDC, University of York
New staff join IGDC
Jessica Omukuti and Laura Harrison join as Postdoctoral Research
Associates, working on disaster resilience and ecological risk assessment methods, respectively. Tara Mundy joins as IGDC Administrator.
Writing Workshop for gender inequality focussed ECRs in West Africa
Henrice Altink (IGDC Co-Director), Rachel Alsop (University of York) and Nana Amfo (University of Ghana) awarded funding by BA/GCRF.
Blog: Displaced women and girls in Latin America threatened by COVID-19
Jean Grugel, Natalia Cintra and Pia Riggirozzi write about the urgent need for rights-based health policies to protect displaced women and girls.
Humanitarian Academy for Development (HAD)
Practising Faith during the Coronavirus Crisis
With mosques closed, lockdowns in place, and social distancing being encouraged, the way many Muslims usually observe Ramadan is inevitably going to change this year. The question of how Muslims practice faith during the coronavirus crisis is the focus of two recently published HAD blog posts. The first blog post argues that the narrative that "this Ramadan is going to be very different" overlooks that Ramadan without communal elements is the norm for many Muslims, such as refugees, migrants and single parents. The second piece provides practical advice on how to make the most of Ramadan during the current crisis.
United Nations University UNU-WIDER
UNU-WIDER has established a COVID-19 page to collate all the COVID-19 related work from across the institute. This includes new research papers, commentary from around the WIDER network, and details of upcoming webinars. Content is updated regularly here.
In a recent paper for UNU-WIDER, economists estimated that close to half a billion people could fall into poverty as a consequence of the COVID-19 pandemic. This research was featured in a major Oxfam report calling for action from the G20. The research was cited in over 2,500 print and digital news sources.
Working paper: Estimates of the impact of COVID-19 on global poverty
Blog: Will COVID-19 lead to half a billion more people living in poverty in developing countries?
In the media: Poverty estimates featured in worldwide media
UNU-WIDER has partnered up with a team of international researchers from the International ISDC, IDS and IGZ on an exciting and very timely research initiative to collect real time data on the coronavirus and its social and economic consequences. The project is called Life with Corona, with overall aim to build a global knowledge base about how people are dealing with the exceptional situation we currently find ourselves living in. We invite you to spread the word about the survey within your networks, and of course, to fill in the survey yourselves as well.
International Institute of Social Studies, Erasmus University
ISS highlights its engaged research
ISS Global Development and Social Justice research programme takes a critical approach to policy responses that are formulated to social, economic and political issues. The critical attitude is the result of a deeply felt need to analyse the way in which power differences among groups of people result in policies and practices that are highly beneficial to the powerful and detrimental to the powerless.
Watch this video for a general impression.
For more examples please take a look at some highlights of ISS research InSightS.
University of Bristol - Questionnaire
For our research on international research partnerships and collaboration, we are gathering the perspectives of Southern- and Northern-based actors. We would greatly appreciate your views on this topic by completing this brief questionnaire. This study has received ethical approval from the University of Bristol. Any information provided here will be treated confidentially within the research team and anonymised in reporting.
For further details, please contact Tigist Grieve (tigist.grieve(at)bristol.ac.uk) or Rafael Mitchell (rafael.mitchell(at)bristol.ac.uk)
EADI have released a statement on COVID-19, which you can read on the EADI website.
EADI has recently published its 2018 Annual Report which also highlights some plans for the coming year. These include EADI's new Blog, “Debating Development Research”, which features cutting edge articles written by EADI members. The blog will introduce the topics of the next EADI General Conference to be held in The Hague, which has been postponed to 5-8 July 2021 due to the Coronavirus pandemic. EADI also offers a webinar series, which offers participants the opportunity to engage with critical thinkers and innovative new research findings.
Your chance to make an impact in Research Communications
Interested in Research Communications? The European Association of Development Research and Training Institutes (of which DPP is a member) is looking for academic members for its newly formed Research Communications working group. Read more…
EADI student membership is now free to all students
See here for all the details and how to become an EADI member.