Globalization -enabling connections to be made between people and places on a world scale- is changing the world, and this is commonly assumed to have important implications for development processes, including the opportunities for poverty alleviation. According to the pessimists, globalization –though it has been benign for the majority of the developing world, is not working for the large majority of the poor. On the contrary, it is liable to make them more marginal. The more optimist group of scholars stress the positive aspects of globalization – facilitating people to use the newly created ‘ladders’ that will help them to escape from poverty. Others focus on the implications of globalization for ‘hybrid development’, showing that globalization will contribute to a new paradigm of development. In a globalizing world, local development is increasingly played out in a matrix of links that connect people and places with other places and people elsewhere. Globalization, after all, is connecting people and places that are distant in space but linked in such ways that what happens in one place has direct bearing on the other. Any locality can be viewed as a specific node in which numerous networks of different nature meet, possibly creating synergies, or perhaps clashing with each other. To what extent does globalization provide people with additional manoeuvring space, providing them with better opportunities to build sustainable lives and/or escape from poverty? How can local actors benefit from ‘global opportunities’ in such a way that this will provide a basis for sustainable development? How is the economic crisis resulting in deglobalization and what is the impact for local development?
The course will start with a comparative overview of major development trends in Asia, Latin America and Africa, covering the overarching theme of: Translocal development in the global south: new scarcities, new mobilities. The course will then focus on a number of IDS’s research themes (which are linked to the internship programme):
• Private sector development, global value chains and local economic development
• Privatization of land, land grabbing and local implications
• Sustainable urban futures? Issues of urbanization and urban governance
• Public service delivery (education, health and sanitation) and local development
• Deforestation and sustainable forest management
• Climate change and natural resource management: Living on the edge
• Responsible investments?
• Transnationalism, migration and development
In addition to lectures by IDS-staff, a number of key-note speakers will be invited (‘meet the professional’); and IDS-students (who just returned from the field) will be invited to share their experience.