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Department of International Development

How to contact us

Department of International Development
6-8th Floors, Connaught House
London School of Economics and Political Science
Houghton Street
WC2A 2AE  

Office hours:
10am - 12.30pm and 2pm - 4pm


Tel: +44 (020) 7955 6252/7425
+44 (020) 3486 2626



Tel: +44 (020) 7955 6565


Frequently Asked Questions


Please submit enquiries through our online query form


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The Department of International Development (ID) was established in 1990 as the Development Studies Institute (DESTIN) to promote interdisciplinary postgraduate teaching and research on processes of social, political and economic development and change.

The Role of Higher Education in Ensuring Afghanistan’s Prosperous Future

The Department of International Development is honoured to host: Dr Kenneth Holland, President at the American University of Afghanistan (AUAF); Dr Said Tayeb Jawad, Ambassador of Afghanistan to the UK; and award winning anchor and correspondent Yalda Hakim to the LSE to discuss the role of higher education in Afghanistan in ensuring the country’s prosperous future.

The event is open to the public and will take place on the evening of Monday 10 July at the LSE.

Full details of the event can be found here


Professor James Putzel on the battle over Marawi City

Over the past two weeks, Professor Putzel has been providing media commentary concerning the battle over Marawi City between Philippine government troops and ISIS-linked Islamist armed groups. He says only an acceleration of the implementation of a stalled Peace Agreement can avoid the spread of Islamic fundamentalism in the Philippines.

You can view a clip of Professor Putzel on BBC World here

Mayling Birney

Dr Mayling Birney on BBC World Service               

Dr Birney appeared on the BBC Newshour (BBC World Service radio) on Tuesday 12 June, giving her comments on China's recent crack down on fake economic data despite it being a long-standing problem.               

You can listen to her comments here (26:36 - 29:55)

Sheikh Zayed Lecture

ID department hiring two part-time Teaching Fellows              

The Department of International Development is looking for two part-time Teaching Fellows to contribute to advising and teaching on the MSc in Development Management, including the Development Management Project and related components during the 17/18 academic year.      

Further details on each post can be found here.

Geoffery Swenson

Dr Geoffrey Swenson awarded the 2016 Bapsybanoo Marchioness of Winchester Thesis Prize

Congratulations to Geoffrey Swenson, who has won the Bapsybanoo Marchioness of Winchester Thesis Prize 2016 for a paper entitled Addressing Crises of Order: Judicial State-building in the Wake of Conflict. The Winchester Prize is awarded by University of Oxford Social Sciences for the most outstanding thesis in area of International Relations, with particular reference to human rights and fundamental freedoms.

Geoffrey completed his DPhil in International Relations at Oxford University on post-conflict judicial state-building in legally pluralist settings.

New book from Professor Kaldor: International Law and New Wars

Professor Mary Kaldor and Professor Christine Chinkin’s new book, International Law and New Wars examines how international law, largely constructed in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, rests to a great extent on the outmoded concept of war drawn from European experience - inter-state clashes involving battles between regular and identifiable armed forces. The book shows how different approaches are associated with different interpretations of international law, and, in some cases, this has dangerously weakened the legal restraints on war established after 1945. It puts forward a practical case for what it defines as second generation human security and the implications this carries for international law.

Click here to find out about the book launch.
Click here to pre-order your book.
Dr Jean-Paul Faguet

Conference on Long-Range Development in Latin America

The inaugural LSE-Stanford-Universidad de los Andes Conference on Long-Range Development in Latin America will take place in Stanford on 11-12 May. The papers presented by co-organiser, Professor Jean Paul Faguet, are a blend of politics, economics and history, and trace the intellectual frontiers of long-run development in Latin America and beyond. They will be publicly available soon.

More about the event here


Tim runs London Marathon

A huge congratulations to Professor Tim Allen for completing the London Marathon on Sunday in just under five hours!

As many of you know, in 2000 Tim was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia. After a year of treatment, the cancer returned and the only way to save his life was to find an unrelated bone marrow donor. The Anthony Nolan Trust finds such people, and Tim is still alive, because someone he had never met was willing to provide bone marrow to attempt a transplant. Each year, Tim runs the London Marathon to remember what the donor did for him, and to raise funds for the Nolan Trust.

Please sponsor Tim, even if it is just for a small amount.

Sponsor Tim's run here.                  


ID department hiring Guest Teacher for Comparative Political Economy              

The Department of International Development would like to hire a Guest Teacher for a postgraduate course on Comparative Political Economy. Candidates should have completed a PhD in a social science discipline such as Development Studies, International Relations, Politics, or Sociology (or similar subjects).              

You can view the full job description here

Holly Porter Visiting Fellow, Lead Researcher (JSRP) London School of Economics

Book launch for After Rape

This event on the evening of the 9th of May, hosted by Firoz Lalji Centre for Africa, marks the publication of Holly Porter’s new book After Rape: violence, justice and social harmony in Uganda. Holly Porter will talk about the book with Adam Branch from Cambridge University and the event will be chaired by Professor Tim Allen, Director of the Firoz Lalji Centre and Head of the Department for International Development.

Click here to reserve your space for the talk  


Professor Robert Ashford to talk at LSE in May

Professor Robert Ashford, Distinguished Professor of Law at Syracuse University, will deliver a public talk on the evening of the 4th of May at The London School of Economics. To coincide with a new book, he will suggest a new approach to making employment and growth more sustainable by broadening capital ownership, using the earnings of capital.              

Find out more about the event here.

After Raper Holly Porter

After Rape, the new book from Dr Holly Porter              

Drawing upon abundant fieldwork and in-depth interviews with almost 200 women, Dr Holly Porter, Research Fellow from the department and Lead Researcher for the Justice and Security Research Programme, examines issues surrounding wrongdoing and justice, and sexual violence and rape, among the Acholi people in northern Uganda.              

Find out more about the book here.


Applications now open for LSE-UCT July School              

The London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) and the University of Cape Town (UCT) are delighted to offer the fifth LSE-UCT July School from 17 - 28 July 2017 in Cape Town, South Africa.              

This innovative and prestigious two-week 'summer school' style programme provides the highest calibre students, graduates and professionals from across the globe with an exciting opportunity to study important social science issues relevant to Africa today across subject areas as diverse as international relations, economics, management, government, geography, law, media and social policy.              

Click here to apply for the summer school.


Congratulations to Dr Sandra Sequeira              

Congratulations to Dr Sandra Seqeira who has been promoted from Assistant Professor to Associate Professor in Development Economics.  Dr Seqeira is also Lead Academic for the International Growth Centre’s Mozambique programme. Her research applies a combination of experimental and quasi-experimental methods to three broad themes in development economics: infrastructure and growth, private sector development in developing countries and the economic costs of bureaucratic corruption.

You can see Dr Sandra Sequeira's full profile here.

Max Gallien, PhD Student, International Development

PhD student Max Gallien wins ESRC Writing Competition

A huge congratulations to Max Gallien, PhD student in the Department of International Development, for recently being announced of one of only four prize winners in the highly prestigious ESRC Writing Competition. Max’s entry “Researching the informal economy teaches us about the lives of the most vulnerable in our society” was runner up in the competition which is run in partnership with SAGE publications.

You can read Max Gallien's entry for the competition here.

Dr Tasha Fairfield

Dr Tasha Fairfield to join Stanford Univeristy as fellow

Tasha Fairfield will be a 2017-2018 fellow at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences (CASBS) at Stanford University, where she will be working on a book project, “Social Inquiry and Bayesian Inference: Rethinking Qualitative Research.”  Her article with A.E. Charman, "Explicit Bayesian analysis for process tracing: guidelines, opportunities, and caveats," is forthcoming in Political Analysis. 


Professor Tim Forsyth receives grant to research resilience in Nepal and Myanmar

Tim Forsyth has won a grant funded by the Rockefeller Foundation to conduct research on the resilience and access to sustainable growth in upland Nepal and Myanmar. The grant which is equivalent to £350,000. Tim, the principle investigator with collaborators in Oxford and East Anglia, will be investigating how livelihood transitions in upland, and post-conflict villages in Nepal and Myanmar change what we think about risk and resilience, including resilience to climate change.


Mary Kaldor awarded BISA Distinguished Contribution Prize

Professor Mary Kaldor was awarded the Distinguished Contribution Prize by the British International Studies Association (BISTA). The prize recognises an individual’s contribution to the promotion of excellence in the discipline of International Studies over a substantial period of time. The award also recognises the distinction in the intellectual development and the leadership of the discipline, as well as acknowledging the considerable prestige added by the individual to International Studies in the UK and beyond.  

Find out more about BISA here.


Stuart Gordon at the IWM

Dr Stuart Gordon has been featured in a video interview at the Imperial War Museum for an exhibition about the British arrival in Helmand. The exhibition examines the British arrival in the Afghan province in 2006 and the decisions that shaped the way the conflict escalated, exploring the impact the period had on those who were there and the lessons learnt from the deployment.

Find out more about the exhibition here.


Development Management Student Releases Debut Book

MSc Development Management student and Khattar Scholar, Agnes Chew, released her first debut nonfictional book, titled The Desire for Elsewhere, at the Singapore Writers Festival 2016.

You can find out more about the book here.

Dr Pritish Behuria, Teaching Fellow, International Development

Pritish Behuria Interviewed by Radio France International

Pritish Behuria, Visiting Fellow of the department, was interviewed by Radio France International about Agaciro in Rwanda. This follows on from his recent publication in The Journal of Eastern African Studies about the subject.  

You can listen to the interview here.


Tim Allen gives expert testimony at the ICC

Last week, Tim Allen gave his expert testimony at the trail of the Lord's Resistance Army's warlord, Dominic Ongwen. The trail which was held at the ICC was streamed live and watched globally, including in Uganda and South Sudan where the crimes had allegedly taken place.

You can find out more about the trail here

Photo for the webpage about scholarships for Africans by Owen Billcliffe

Various scholarships and awards available for African students

The Firoz Lalji Centre for Africa has compiled a list of scholarships, awards and bursaries targeting African applicants wishing to study at LSE. Awards range from partial to full scholarships.

You can view the list here

Diego Sanchez Ancochea. Photo QEH. Nov 2016

Book launch: The Quest for Universal Social Policy in the South. Thursday 28 February, 6.30pm, 32L.G.03 

Universal social policies have the power to reduce inequality and create more cohesive societies. But how can countries in the South deliver universalism? Diego Sánchez-Ancochea (together with Juliana Martínez Franzoni) answers this question through a comparative analysis of Costa Rica, Mauritius, South Korea, and Uruguay, and a detailed historical account of Costa Rica’s successful trajectory in a new book.

You can find out more about the event here 


LSE ranked 3rd best university in the world for Development Studies

QS TopUniversities has ranked The London School of Economics the third best university in the world for Development Studies. LSE jumped two places from the previous year, topping both Oxford and Cambridge University, and is the only university on the list to have scored full marks for research impact.    

You can see the full list of universities here


International Development students have their paper published by the Inter-American Development Bank

A group of students from last year’s Development Management class have had their constancy project published for the Inter-American Development Bank. The paper analyses the different ways in which big data can be leveraged to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of governments in Latin America and the Caribbean by using five case studies. 

You can download and read the paper by following this link 

Tasha Fairfield - Private Wealth Public Revenue

Dr Tasha Fairfield wins the Donna Lee Van Cott Award for best book on political institutions 

Dr Fairfield, an Assistant Professor in Development Studies in the Department of International Development has been awarded the 2016 Donna Lee Van Cott Award for best book on political institutions for her book Private Wealth and Public Revenue in Latin America (Cambridge University Press, 2015). The committee for the prize described it as "both theoretically and empirically rich and persuasive in showing the impact of business power in reforming tax policy across and within countries". They went on to say that they "found particularly compelling the way in which the book brings social movements into the picture to explain how movements in the street can change the balance of power between states and business and empower states to pass anti-business tax reforms."


New Report - "From Hybrid Peace to Human Security: Rethinking EU Strategy towards Conflict"

The latest report by the Civil Society and Human Security Research Unit proposes that the European Union adopts a second generation human security approach to conflicts, as an alternative to Geo-Politics or the War on Terror.

Read the full report here


Professor Jean-Paul Faguet speaks at World Bank

On Wednesday 10 February Professor Jean-Paul Faguet spoke at an event at the World Bank entitled "Is Decentralization Good for Development: Perspectives from Academics & Policy Makers", where he discussed his research from his book of the same name.

A video of the event can be found here


Professor Kaldor receives honorary award at University of Sussex graduation

On Friday 22 January Mary Kador was awarded an honorary doctorate from the University of Sussex for her  academic excellence and her contribution on issues of humanitarian security and the new causes of war. The award  was conferred to her by the Chancellor of the University, actor and writer Sanjeev Bhaskar at Brighton’s Dome, where the University’s winter graduation ceremonies took place.

Geoff Faraday

International Development student awarded New Zealand Gallantry Star

LSE International Development postgraduate student, Geoff Faraday, awarded New Zealand Gallantry Star for two acts of extraordinary bravery while serving as an army major in a United Nations peacekeeping mission in South Sudan. Read more about Geoff's award on the International Development blog 

Property and Political Order in Africa by Catherine Boone

Prestigious Awards for Professor Catherine Boone

The Department of International Development is delighted to announce that Property and Political Order in Africa: Land Rights and the Structure of Politics by Catherine Boone has been awarded Best Book 2015 by African Politics Conference Group of the American Political Science Assocation and the ASA Herskovitz Award Honorable Mention 2015 for the best book published in English in African Studies in the last two years by the African Studies Association (ASA).

Robert Wade - Governing The Market

Robert Wade commemorated in Beijing

The 25th anniversary of Robert Wade's influential book, Governing the Market, was acknowledged by a special panel at the Beijing Forum last week (Friday 6 November). Professor Wang Zhengyi of Peking University organised the panel to commemorate the milestone, which included scholars from around the world.

Professor Wade also contributed to the event, speaking on 'The role of the state in escaping the middle-income trap: the role of smart industrial polices'.

For more on his research, see Robert Wade's experts page.


Jean-Paul Faguet promotes new book in South America

Jean-Paul Faguet has been in South America this week promoting his new book, Is Decentralization Good for Development? He gave the keynote address at the LACEA/World Bank/IDB/UNDP Research Network on Inequality and Poverty, as well as lectures at the Catholic University of Bolivia, and the UMSA, the main public university in La Paz. He has also faced a live TV interview on one of Bolivia’s main current affairs programmes, ‘A Todo Pulmón’.

A roundtable discussion to launch the book, featuring co-editor and recent PhD graduate, Caroline Pöschl, will take place at LSE on 2 December, with details to follow on our events page.


Mayling Birney discusses the Magna Carta on BBC's Newshour

Mayling Birney featured on the BBC’s Newshour this week, talking about the late diversion of the Magna Carta exhibition from Renmin University in Beijing to the British Ambassador’s Residence. Dr Birney considered why the authorities might have moved to restrict public access to the 800-year-old document. The audio and transcript are available on the International Development blog.
Winnie Byanyima, Executive Director, Oxfam International (Photo credit: Oxfam)

Winnie Byanyima captivates audience at LSE

Oxfam International is moving its headquarters from Oxford to Nairobi, executive director Winnie Byanyima announced at LSE on Monday. Her public lecture ‘Is Africa Rising?’ spoke about issues of investment, inequality and tax manipulation in Africa and was very well received by a sell-out audience. A summary and podcast are available on the International Development blog.

Further Africa Talks will be given by Attahiru Jega, the former Chair of Nigeria’s Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), on 10 November, and by academic and author, Alcinda Honwana, on 18 November.

Remember to check our Events page for more details on these and other events as they emerge.

Richard Youngs - The Puzzle of Non-Western Democracy

Reviving Global Democracy: Book launch, 11 November

The Civil Society and Human Security Research Unit is hosting a panel discussion for the launch of Richard Youngs' new book, The Puzzle of Non-Western Democracy, on Wednesday 11 November. The evening will feature Richard Youngs, Mukulika Banerjee and Senem Aydin-Düzgit, and will be chaired by Mary Kaldor.

More information can be found on our events page.


More news >>


Why U.S. Efforts to Promote the Rule of Law in Afghanistan Failed                                

Swenson, Geoffrey
International Security (2017)

Since 2001, the United States has expended vast resources attempting to promote the rule of law in Afghanistan. This effort failed for two reasons. First, U.S. efforts prioritized supporting the state legal system, despite its corruption and lack of legitimacy. Second, policymakers often overlooked nonstate tribal and religious justice systems. Successfully promoting the rule of law after conflict requires realistic expectations and deep understanding of a country’s legal culture, politics, and history.

To read the full article, click here >>


Afghanistan’s Taliban – Legitimate Jihadists or Coercive Extremists?

Weigand, Florian
Journal of Intervention and Statebuilding (2017)

The military intervention in Afghanistan in 2001 was portrayed as a fight to oust the extremist Taliban. But the Taliban have long been regaining influence, with the military victory of the Afghan government and its foreign allies now seeming less likely than ever. In light of these developments, this article investigates what the affected people – rather than the foreign interveners – think about the Taliban, and whether they perceive them as coercive or legitimate. Building on a conceptual understanding of legitimacy that has been adjusted to the dynamics of conflict-torn spaces, the article suggests that people judge the Taliban on the basis of how their day-to-day behaviour is perceived. While the Taliban are a coercive threat in urban centres and other areas where they launch attacks, they nonetheless manage to construct legitimacy in some of the places which they control or can access easily. A major source of their legitimacy in these areas is the way in which they provide services – such as conflict resolution – which some people consider to be faster and fairer than the state’s practices.


To read the full article, click here >>

African Affairs, Oxford Journals

Studying political settlements in Africa

Behuria, Pritish. Buur, Lars and Gray, Hazel. African Affairs (2017)

The political settlements approach emerged out of a critique of new institutional economics developed by Mushtaq Khan in the 1990s. Since then, the political settlements approach has proliferated in donor programming and academic scholarship on African countries. This has led to some confusion about its core conceptual and methodological features. This Research Note starts by setting out our understanding of political settlements and provides an overview of existing political settlements literature on African countries. The overall contribution of the note is to illustrate the varied strategies used in studying political settlements and to place them in conversation with one another.

To read the full article, click here >>

Blending Top-Down Federalism with Bottom-Up Engagement to Reduce Inequality in Ethiopia              

Faguet, J.P., Q. Khan and A. Ambel                 
World Development (2017)              

Donors increasingly fund interventions to counteract inequality in developing countries, where they fear it can foment instability and undermine nation-building efforts. To succeed, aid relies on the principle of upward accountability to donors. But federalism shifts the accountability of subnational officials downward to regional and local voters. What happens when aid agencies fund anti-inequality programs in federal countries? Does federalism undermine aid? Does aid undermine federalism? Or can the political and fiscal relations that define a federal system resolve the contradiction internally? The authors explore this paradox via the Promotion of Basic Services program in Ethiopia, the largest donor-financed investment program in the world. Using an original panel database comprising the universe of Ethiopian woredas (districts), the study finds that horizontal (geographic) inequality decreased substantially.               

To read the full article, click here >>


Relative indemnity: risk, insurance, and kinship in Indian microfinance              

Kar, Sohini                 
J R Anthropol Inst (2017)              

With the growth of commercial microfinance in India, the poor have been increasingly enfolded into circuits of global finance. In making these collateral-free loans, however, microfinance institutions (MFIs) engage in new forms of risk management. While loans are made to women with the goal of economic and social empowerment, MFIs require male kin to serve as guarantors. Drawing on fieldwork in the city of Kolkata, I argue that through the requirement of male guarantors, MFIs hedge on kinship, even as they speculate on the bottom of the pyramid as a new market of accumulation.              

To read the full article, click here >>


The American paradox: ideology of free markets and the hidden practice of directional thrust             

Wade, Robert                
Cambridge Journal of Economics (2017)              

This essay reviews the history of US industrial policy, with an emphasis on ‘network-building industrial policy’ over the past two decades. At the end, it draws a lesson for policy communities in other countries and interstate development organisations such as the World Bank and IMF.              

To read the full article, click here >>


Tracking presidents and policies: environmental politics from Lula to Dilma             

Hochstetler, Kathryn                  
Policy Studies (2017)               

Does the Brazilian presidential system shape environmental policy there? The comparative literature on environmental policy offers few reasons to think that it might. This article examines environmental policies and outcomes in three successive presidential administrations in Brazil to develop hypotheses about whether institutional factors should gain a larger place in comparative studies of environmental policies and outcomes.              

To read the full article, click here >>


Contesting the militarization of the places where they met: the landscapes of the western Nuer and Dinka (South Sudan)     

Pendle, Naomi                 
Journal of East African Studies (2017)               

Decades of militarized, violent conflict and elite wealth acquisition have created a common rupture in shared landscapes between communities of the western Dinka and Nuer (South Sudan). Through the remaking of these landscapes, governments and their wars have indirectly reshaped political identities and relationships. Networks of complex relationships have used this space for migration, marriage, trade and burial. Since the government wars of the 1980s, people from both Dinka and Nuer communities have participated in a myriad of cross-cutting political alliances with a lack of ethnic homogeneity. Yet, the recreation of this landscape as a militarized no-man’s land has stopped Nuer and Dinka meeting and is etching into the landscape naturalized visions of ethnic divisions.              

To read the full article, click here >>


Transitional Justice and Political Economies of Survival in Post-conflict Northern Uganda              

Macdonald, Anna                
Development and Change (2017)              

This article explores the interplay between transitional justice and ‘everyday’ political economies of survival in post-conflict Acholiland, northern Uganda. Based on extensive fieldwork in Acholiland in the period 2012–14, using a range of qualitative research methods, the author examines the means through which people negotiate social and moral order in the context of post-conflict life and analyses the tensions between these forms of ‘everyday’ activity and current transitional justice policy and programming in the region.              

To read the full article, click here >>


Legal Pluralism and Women's Rights After Conflict: The Role of CEDAW

Swenson, Geoffrey. and Campbell, Meghan 
Columbia Human Rights Law Reveiw (2016)

Protecting and promoting women’s rights is an immense challenge after conflict, especially when non-state justice systems handle most disputes. However, legal pluralism’s implications for gender equality remain under-theorized. This Article examines the potential of the Convention for Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination (CEDAW) and analyses how the CEDAW Committee to can more effectively promote gender equality in legally pluralistic, post-conflict states.

To read the full article, click here >>

Promoting and regulating generic medicines: Brazil in comparative perspective              

Shadlen Kenneth C. and Fonseca, Elize Massard da                 PAHO (2017)              

Promoting the use of generic drugs can constitute a core instrument for countries’ national pharmaceutical policies, one that reduces drug expenditure while expanding health care access. Despite the potential importance of such policy measures and the differences among national practices, scholars embarking on comparative analysis lack a roadmap for determining which dimensions of generic drug policy to assess and compare. This report fills that gap by considering national rules and regulations across four dimensions deemed crucial to any evaluation.              

To read the full article, click here >>


Secondary pharmaceutical patenting: A global perspective                      

Kenneth C. Shadlen and Bhaven N. Sampata                
Research Policy (2017)              

Pharmaceutical firms’ use of secondary patents to extend periods of exclusivity generates concerns among policymakers worldwide. In response, some developing countries have introduced measures to curb the grant of these patents. While these measures have received considerable attention, there is limited evidence on their effectiveness. We follow a large sample of international patent applications in the US, Japan, the European Patent Office, and corresponding filings in three developing countries with restrictions on secondary patents, India, Brazil, and Argentina.              

To read the full article, click here >>


Explicit Bayesian analysis for process tracing: guidelines, Oopportunities, and caveats        

Fairfield, Tasha and Charman, Andrew 
Political Analysis (2017)

Bayesian probability holds the potential to serve as an important bridge between qualitative and quantitative methodology. Yet whereas Bayesian statistical techniques have been successfully elaborated for quantitative research, applying Bayesian probability to qualitative research remains an open frontier. This paper advances the burgeoning literature on Bayesian process tracing by drawing on expositions of Bayesian “probability as extended logic” from the physical sciences, where probabilities represent rational degrees of belief in propositions given the inevitably limited information we possess.

To read the full article, click here >>

Oxford Development Studies Journal

The politics of natural disasters in protracted conflict: the 2014 flood in Kashmir

Venugopal, Rajesh and Yasir, Sameer
Oxford Development Studies (2017)

This paper explores the politics of the 2014 floods in the contentious and conflict-prone Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir. The September 2014 floods were the most serious natural disaster in the state in the past 60 years, and affected some two million people in the Kashmir valley. 

To read the full article, click here >>


Rural bias in African electoral systems: Legacies of unequal representation in African democracies

Boone, Catherine and Wahman, Michael
Electoral Studies (2017)

Although electoral malapportionment is a recurrent theme in monitoring reports on African elections, few researchers have tackled this issue. Here we theorize the meaning and broader implications of malapportionment in eight African countries with Single Member District (SMD) electoral systems. 

To read the full article, click here >>

journal of agrian change

The Quest to Bring Land under Social and Political Control: Land Reform Struggles of the Past and Present in Ecuador

Geoff Goodwin 
Journal of Agrarian Change (2016)              

Land reform was one of the most important policies introduced in Latin America in the twentieth century and remains high on the political agenda due to sustained pressure from rural social movements. Improving our understanding of the issue therefore remains a pressing concern. This paper responds to this need by proposing a new theoretical framework to explore land reform and providing a fresh analysis of historical and contemporary land struggles in Ecuador.

To read the full article, click here >>


The Trial of Thomas Kwoyelo: Opportunites or spectre? Reflections from the ground on the first LRA prosecution

Anna Macdonald and Holly Porter
Africa (2016)

The trial of Thomas Kwoyelo – the first war crimes prosecution of a former Lord's Resistance Army fighter, and the only domestic war crimes prosecution in Uganda at the time of writing – has been packed with drama, intrigue and politics. The article considers what Kwoyelo's trial means for those most affected by the crimes he allegedly committed, and, more broadly, what it means for the ‘transitional justice’ project in Uganda.

To read the full article, click here >>

Countering threats, stabilising politics and selling hope: examining the Agaciro  concept as a response to a critical juncture in Rwanda              


Pritish Behuria                
Journal of Eastern African Studies (2016)              

The political settlements literature has assigned a privileged role to rents as instruments used by ruling elites to maintain political stability. Since then, there has been some attempt to highlight how ideas may play a similarly important role in contributing to political stability. This article explores how ruling elites in Rwanda responded to a ‘critical juncture’ in 2012 when donors withdrew foreign aid after they alleged that the Rwandan Patriotic Front government was supporting rebel groups in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

To read the full article, click here >>


Precolonial Political Centralization and Contemporary Development in Uganda

Green, Elliott and Sanghamitra Bandyopadhyay                                 Economic Development and Cultural Change Vol 64.3 (April 2016)

The role of precolonial history on contemporary development has become an important field of study within development economics. In this article the authors examine the role of precolonial political centralization on contemporary development outcomes with detailed subnational data from Uganda.

To read the full article, click here >>


Structuralism, The Oxford Handbook of Politics of Development

Green, Elliott                                                                                       Structuralism, forthcoming in the Oxford Handbook of Politics of Development, edited by Carol Lancaster and Nicolas van de Walle (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2016)

This article examines the structural origins of developmental politics by focusing on the argument that “bad politicians” are the reason for the problem with politics in developing countries, or that great leaders are responsible for development.

To read the full article, click here >>


Decentralization and Development in Contemporary Uganda

Green,  Elliott                                                                                             Regional & Federal Studies Vol 25.5 (Nov 2015)

There has long been an emphasis on the importance of decentralization in providing better quality public services in the developing world. In order to assess the effectiveness of decentralization I examine here the case study of Uganda, which has seen major decentralization of power over the last quarter-century. 

To read the full article, click here >>

African Political Economy

Centralising rents and dispersing power while pursuing development? Exploring the strategic uses of military firms in Rwanda

Behuria, Pritish                                                                                           Review of African Political Economy (Feb 2016)

The Rwandan Patriotic Front has achieved significant economic progress while also maintaining political stability. However, frictions among ruling elites have threatened progress. This paper explores the use of military firms in Rwanda. Such firms are used to invest in strategic industries, but the use of such firms reflects the vulnerability faced by ruling elites. Military firms serve two related purposes. First, ruling elites use such firms to centralise rents and invest in strategic sectors. Second, the proliferation of such enterprises and the separation of party- and military-owned firms contribute to dispersing power within a centralised hierarchy.

To read the full article, click here >>

Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies

Europe's failed ‘fight’ against irregular migration: ethnographic notes on a counterproductive industry

Andersson, Ruben                                                                                      Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies (Feb 2016)

Despite Europe's mass investments in advanced border controls, people keep arriving along the continent's shores under desperate circumstances. European attempts to ‘secure’ or ‘protect’ the borders have quite clearly failed, as politicians themselves increasingly recognise – yet more of the same response is again rolled out in response to the escalating ‘refugee crisis’. Amid the deadlock, this article argues that we need to grasp the mechanics and logics of the European ‘border security model’ in order to open up for a change of course.

To read the full article, click here >>

Economy For and Against Democracy by Keith Hart, LSE International Development

Economy For and Against Democracy

Hart, Keith
Berghahn (2015)

Political constitutions alone do not guarantee democracy; a degree of economic equality is also essential. Yet contemporary economies, dominated as they are by global finance and political rent-seekers, often block the realization of democracy. The comparative essays and case studies of this volume examine the contradictory relationship between the economy and democracy and highlight the struggles and visions needed to make things more equitable. They explore how our collective aspirations for greater democracy might be informed by serious empirical research on the human economy today. If we want a better world, we must act on existing social realities.

Is Decentralization Good for Development? ed. Jean-Paul Faguet and Caroline Poschl (Oxford University Press, 2015)

Is Decentralization Good for Development?

Faguet, Jean-Paul, and Caroline Pöschl (eds),
Oxford University Press (2015).

Is decentralisation good for development? This book explains when the answer is "Yes", and when it is "No". It shows how decentralisation can be designed to drive development forward, and focuses attention on the institutional incentives that can strengthen democracy, boost economies, and improve public sector performance. It also analyses the political motives behind decentralisation, and how these shape the institutions that result. For more information, click here.

Economic and Political Weekly (2015)

Will the JAM Trinity Dismantle the Public Distribution System?

Masiero, Silvia
Economic and Political Weekly, 45 (2015), 21-23.

The platform known as the JAM Trinity (an acronym for Jan Dhan Yojana, Aadhaar and mobile numbers) may enable a shift from the current Public Distribution System, based on price subsidies, to the direct transfer of benefits. However, JAM technologies will not necessarily lead to the demise of the PDS. State-level experiences reveal that such technologies can improve the system by combatting the leakage problems that disrupt it.

Security Dialogue

Hardwiring the frontier? The politics of security technology in Europe's 'fight against illegal migration'

Andersson, Ruben
Security Dialogue (2015), 1-18.

Migration controls at the external EU borders have become a large field of political and financial investment in recent years - indeed, an 'industry' of sorts - yet conflicts between states and border agencies still mar attempts at cooperation. This article takes a close look at one way in which officials try to overcome such conflicts: through technology.

Journal of Democracy

Decentralizing for a Deeper, More Supple Democracy

Faguet, Jean-Paul, Ashley M. Fox, and Caroline Pöschl
Journal of Democracy, 26.4 (2015), 60-74.

Can decentralization strengthen democracy, or is it doomed to weaken the state? Over the past three decades, most countries have experimented with some form of decentralization. Yet, many analysts worry that it will weaken the state. We review recent evidence regarding decentralization and state strength and argue that decentralization can deepen democracy without compromising state strength if adequately designed.

Governance and Adaptability of the Chinese Communist Party
'NGOs and Service Sub-Contracting: New form of social welfare or social appeasement?' by Jude Howell, in Governance and Adaptation of the Chinese Communist Party.

Yu Keping, Gunter Schubert, Thomas Heberer & Bjorn Alpermann (eds), Beijing Central Compiliation and Translation Press, 2015.

This book includes in-depth analyses of governance and its development in China. The content covers not only the relationship between the Party and state, state-society relations, and centre-local relations, but also the structure, functions, legitimacy, appropriateness and governance competencies of the Chinese Communist Party, the system of leadership and rule, and political stability, government innovation, social governance, basic governance, public services and urbanisation.

Ecuador’s election of the Global South’s first wheelchair-using president can spark vital debate on disability and development
Terhas Clarke and Alejandra Carvajal introduce us to the work of President Lenin Moreno of Ecuador, the first person in a wheelchair to be elected as a head of state in Latin America, and an influential figure that has improved rights for people with disabilities on an international and national level. They invite readers to join the discussion on inclusive development: what inclusive development should look […]

From theory to practice: promoting more inclusive benefits from mining through better measurement and transparency of local procurement
On the 3rd of July 2017, Jeff Geipel, Venture Lead for Mining Shared Value (an initiative of Engineers Without Borders Canada), launched the organisation’s Mining Local Procurement Reporting Mechanism (LPRM) to a room full of  industry professional, development professionals, academics and students. Here he tells us about how the LPRM disclosures work and how the seed of the idea was planted whilst studying […]

Higher education, Afghanistan’s best weapon against extremism
Following a recent panel discussion hosted by LSE’s Department of International Development on The Role of Higher Education in Ensuring Afghanistan’s Prosperous Future (10/07/2017), co-chair to the event, Dr Sajjan Gohel, discusses how education can serve to build the human capital necessary to place the country on a secure and stable path, and the role of the international community in supporting Afghanistan at this […]

Conflict and Humanitarian Response: Sharing experiences in challenging times
George Woodhams, reflects on the Senior-level Course on Conflict and Humanitarian Response, an intensive course for humanitarian professionals taught by the Overseas Development Institute’s Humanitarian Policy Group (HPG) and staff from the Department of International Development at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE). The Syrian conflict, continuing crises in Eastern Ukraine and unprecedented levels of forced displacement from fragile […]

Sneak peak of Professor Faguet’s Popular Democracy, part 5 of 5
To celebrate the Spanish-language launch of Professor Jean-Paul Faguet’s book Popular Democracy: Governance from Below in Bolivia, we will be publishing the first chapter of the book as part of a five part series over the coming month. You can read our post about the book launches in Bolivia here. In case you’ve missed it, you can read part 1/5 […]

Tuesday 31 January 2017

Pritish Behuria, Visiting Fellow of the department, was interviewed by Radio France International about Agaciro in Rwanda. This follows on from his recent publication in The Journal of Eastern African Studies about the subject. Listen to the interview here>>

Thursday 19 January 2017

Duncan Green gave an interview to Malaka Gharib (NPR) about activism and making change happen. The interview was published on January 19 2017 in their online Goats and Soda blog. Read the interview here >>

Monday 28 December 2015

Stuart Gordon, Assistant Professor in Managing Humanitarianism, was interviewed in the Guardian about the impact that conflict has on humanitarian works across the world. Read the article here >>

Tuesday 8 December 2015

Following on from the interview he did on 2 November, Pritish Behuria, Teaching Fellow in Development Studies, was once again interviewed by Deutsche Welle regarding the ongoing third term debate in Rwanda and its impact on domestic Rwandan politics and the region. Listen to the interview here >>

Tuesday 17 November 2015

Following the recent attacks in Paris LSE International Development Professor Mary Kaldor discusses why another "War on Terror" won't work, in an article written for The Nation. Read the article here >>

Wednesday 11 November 2015

Benjamin Chemouni, Teaching Fellow in Development Studies, was interviewed live on Al-Jazeera television last weekend and on Radio RFI [Les Voix du Monde] last week on the crisis in Burundi. He has also undertaken two interviews with Deutche Welle. The first can be found here  and the second is available here.

Monday 2 November 2015

Pritish Behuria, Teaching Fellow in Development Studies, was interviewed by Deutsche Welle regarding the third term debate in Rwanda and its impact on domestic Rwandan politics and the region. Listen to the interview here >>

Friday 30 October 2015

Dr Mayling Birney was interviewed this week by the New York Times about China's shift to a two-child policy. See the article here >>

Mayling recently featured on the BBC’s Newshour, talking about the late diversion of the Magna Carta exhibition from Renmin University in Beijing to the British Ambassador’s Residence. Listen to Dr Birney's interview here >>

Friday 23 October 2015

PhD graduate Alaa Tartir was a speaker at the World Bank's panel on 'Fragility in Middle Income Countries: New ideas for unique challenges', which took place on 8 October. A video recording of the panel (in which Alaa speaks from 43:40 to 51:30) can be found here >>

Monday 5 October 2015

Carlota Perez, Centennial Professor in the Department, features in a CNN report about reducing global poverty. Read the article here >>

Tuesday 29 September 2015

Professor Tim Forsyth features in a Deutsche Welle (DW) article about the battle between growth and conservation in Cambodia, notably the illegal clearing of the Central Cardamom Protected Forest.

Friday 4 September 2015

Alaa Tartir, a former PhD student in International Development and currently the Program Director of Al-Shabaka: The Palestinian Policy Network, has co-authored an article on Palestine for Le Monde diplomatique.

Friday 31 July 2015

Ruben Andersson, a postdoctoral research fellow and an expert on migration and border control, has been discussing the situation in Calais on BBC Radio Scotland. Ruben features 14 mins 30s into the show, which is available until the end of August.

Wednesday 22 July 2015

Professor Danny Quah features in a Bloomberg Business article about 1MDB, a recent financial scandal in Malaysia. Danny believes that Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak has lost momentum in his quest to turn Malaysia into a developed nation by 2020.

Monday 20 July 2015

Mary Kaldor has recently appeared on openDemocracy and the Strife blog from the Department of War Studies at King’s College London. openDemocracy published Prof. Kaldor’s speech from the IBEI graduation ceremony in June, while Strife published an interview with Mary about her perspective on the world and her career in research.

Monday 6 July 2015

Silvia Masiero, a research fellow specialising in ICT4D, has written a column for the 'Ideas For India' webzine about the leakage crisis affecting India's subsidised food programme. See a summary on our blog >>

Thursday 2 July 2015

PhD student Emrys Schoemaker features in The Guardian's recent article on Pakistan's reaction to the rainbow profile pictures on Facebook. Find more from Emrys on our blog >>

More media >>

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