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Global Sustainable Development News

Seed funding success for GSD researcher

Dr Nicholas Bernards has been awarded an Early Career Small Research Grant by the British International Studies Association (BISA), for a project on 'The Colonial Origins of Policy Failures in Global Development Governance'.

The grant for GBP 2,950 will fund preliminary research at the National Archives on the development of financial systems in colonial Africa, focusing in particular on debates between 1930 and 1960 about access to credit for African borrowers in British African colonies. The project examines the particular geographies and institutional forms that regional and territorial financial systems took on in British Africa. It emphasises the ways in which the uneven development of financial systems in the colonial era have posed distinct limits on contemporary global policy frameworks, particularly efforts to promote 'financial inclusion'.

Dr Bernards will present on this research in progress at the BISA 44th annual conference in London on June 12.

Wed 20 March 2019, 15:36

Dr Theobald Theodory from Mzumbe University (Tanzania) will join GSD as a Residential Fellow in May

Dr. Stephanie Panichelli-Batalla has secured funding from IAS to invite Dr. Theobald Theodory from Mzumbe University (Tanzania) as a Residential Fellow. Dr. Theodory is a social scientist focusing on environment and natural resource management. He is a registered environmental expert at the National Environmental Management Committee (NEMC) of Tanzania to carry out environmental impact assessment, environment auditing and environmental monitoring. He serves as a member of editorial boards for different local and international journals. He has a wealth of experience in conducting monitoring and evaluation for different public and private development projects, carrying out of feasibility studies, undertaking baseline surveys and outreach activities. Currently, he is a Lecturer and Acting Head of the Centre for Environment, Poverty and Sustainable Development at the Institute of Development Studies (IDS), Mzumbe University (Tanzania). Dr. Theodory has published extensively in areas of climate change adaptation, land investments, water resources governance and natural resources management. He will be joining us from 12 to 17 May 2019, and will give a lecture as part of our Research Seminar Series on Wednesday 15 May 2019.

Mon 18 March 2019, 09:21

Tales of Treatment

On 7 March, the Warwick Arts Centre opened its doors to the Tales of Treatment photo exhibition, curated by Ms Nutcha (Ern) Charoenboon, directed by GSD Assistant Professor Marco J Haenssgen, and supported by GSD Student Ambassadors Rhys Hillan and Amicie Favre. The photo exhibition narrated 15 stories of traditional healing that the “Antibiotics and Activity Spaces” research team encountered during a demanding journey to 72 villages and more than 15 different ethnic groups in Northern Thailand. Herbal medicine, ghost doctors, sacred books of chants, and ceremonial posts demonstrated that healing maintains firm though waning links to local knowledge and belief systems even in an economy and society transitioning as rapidly as Thailand’s. Approximately 70 guests enjoyed the half-day exhibition, engaged in lively and inspiring discussions, and left the event with very positive feedback! Among the testimonies were, “So enlightening and so inspiring – who knew medicine was so fun!” “Incredibly interesting photo exhibition on the variety of medical treatments used in Asia” “Inspiring story!” “Enchanting photography” In his talk at the exhibition, Dr Haenssgen highlighted how the survey research teams in Southeast Asia witnessed traditional healing experiences but could not capture these practices through the project’s conventional research methods (questionnaires and interviews). Under the supervision of Ern Charoenboon, the team explored photography as an alternative way to generate knowledge. The result was a new and unforeseen perspective that highlighted subtle contradictions and tensions in global health policy and research: “As drug resistance becomes a global health priority that threatens to cause millions of deaths every year, policy makers are exploring new ways to preserve the effectiveness of antibiotics and other antimicrobials,” Dr Haenssgen recalls. “One of the seemingly modern policy responses in Thailand is to offer herbal and non-medicinal alternatives for antibiotic treatment, for example when people have a sore throat. Tales of Treatment documented that this herbal treatment for sore throats had been practised for centuries, but was increasingly marginalised by the expansion of modern Western medicine in Thailand. One wonders, does the survival of modern medicine then depend on the traditional treatment that it had crowded out over the years? At the same time, the prescription of capsules of herbal medicine as an alternative to antibiotics is considered problematic among some anthropologists. Their argument is that the “pharmaceuticalisation” – meaning the prescription of capsules of herbal medicine – reduces more comprehensive traditional treatment to an impersonal transaction. However, we learned from our stories that traditional herbalists themselves use capsules, too, and for very pragmatic reasons – without being agents of Western medical agendas.” If you missed Tales of Treatment, you can read all the stories at, and we will continue to exhibit selected photographs at Ramphal building over the summer. The Tales of Treatment exhibition was supported by the University of Warwick’s Humanities Research Fund, the Global Research Priority on Connecting Cultures, and Global Sustainable Development. “Antibiotics and Activity Spaces” was funded by the Antimicrobial Resistance Cross Council Initiative supported by the seven research councils in partnership with the Department of Health and Department for Environment Food & Rural Affairs (grant ref. ES/P00511X/1, administered by the UK Economic and Social Research Council).

Sat 09 March 2019, 13:39 | Tags: GSD

IAS Funding and Fellowship Success for GSD Researcher!

The Institute of Advanced Study has awarded Assistant Professor Marco J Haenssgen with a prestigious Associate Fellowship that will provide a platform for interdisciplinary exchange and research development.

Tue 05 March 2019, 08:42

Event 'Identities in Motion 4'

The fourth edition of 'Identities in Motion. Legacies and Representations of Mobility in Contemporary Italy' will take place at the University of Warwick on Wednesday, 6 March 2019 (Ramphal Building, R0.04).

'Identities in motion' is a forum in which to discuss methodologies and representational practices. In the context of discussing mobility, Italy offers an interesting case study due to the singularity of the colonial past, the complexity of the process of decolonization, the history of migration from and, in the more recent past, to Italy. All these historical and social phenomena are seen in a multi-disciplinary perspective that encourages a complex awareness of the different meanings of Italian and European identities and belonging.

During the event, the organizers will launch the website, a platform through which track down news, events, and debates pertaining to the themes of the project. For updates on Twitter: #italiesinmotion.

Please find the full programme via this link and download the poster of the event here.

Sun 03 March 2019, 20:05

Awareness campaigns are insufficient to stop superbug crisis in developing countries, Global Sustainable Development research shows

Global Sustainable Development research at Warwick University has uncovered significant difficulties of health communication to fight the superbug crisis in developing countries. Health information events in Thai and Lao villages increased awareness of drug resistance, but the new knowledge tended to benefit more privileged groups and led villagers to start selling antibiotics while sparking rumours and misunderstanding about government antibiotic policies. The research has been published in special issues on antimicrobial resistance (AMR) in the journals Palgrave Communications and Antibiotics.

Tue 26 February 2019, 21:39

Event: "The Grid - A Grid's Eye View on Contemporary Energy Transitions", Gretchen Bakke (Wednesday 27th February at 4pm)

You are all invited to the following seminar:

In places with highly developed electrical infrastructure (grids) the integration of renewable means of making electricity has been surprisingly fraught. Even supporters of renewable power struggle as variably made electricity (when the wind blows, for example, but not when it doesn’t) and distributed generation (solar scattered all over the place) confound the logics of contemporary grids. Infrastructure in this transition is materially incalcitrant, while its resistance to change is often read as political or ideological. In this talk, Prof. Bakke details the infrastructural, cultural and business (structures and cultures) that make a thoroughgoing renewables revolution difficult to accomplish. She points to likely scenarios for strong, resilient, and smart electrified futures and then welcomes the elephant into the room, as energy transition 2.0—the total elimination of fossil fuels from energy systems—overwhelms and complicates the many successes of transition 1.0 (all those renewables) that has already come so far.

Mon 25 February 2019, 13:37

Photo Exhibition: Tales of Treatment

Tales of Treatment: FREE Photo Exhibition, 7 March, 4-7pm, Warwick Arts Centre (Helen Martin Studio)

Quick Facts!

- One-day photo exhibition

- Stories of medicine and traditional healing in Northern Thailand

- Helen Martin Studio, Warwick Arts Centre, 7 March 2019, 4-7pm.

- Guided tours through photo stories every 30 minutes

- Refreshments, wine, and speeches at 6pm

- Admission FREE

- Event page:

Thu 21 February 2019, 13:57

GSD Year 12 Competition: Submit your entry now!

The GSD Year 12 Competition is now open!

Global Sustainable Development hosts an annual competition for Year 12 students across the country, encouraging students to think creatively and gain valuable research skills as they learn more about global sustainable development.

This is an exciting opportunity for students to express their creativity on this cutting edge and vitally important topic. Entrants must respond to set Global Sustainable Development questions in their own way. They can write essays, take photos, create podcasts or videos. Shortlisted entrants will be invited to a Campus Day at Warwick where the winner will be announced.

Please find more information and how to enter here.

Also, find out more about last year's winning entries to the GSD Essay Competition.

Mon 18 February 2019, 15:35

GSD researcher leads landmark qualitative research study published in Trials, comparing the context of clinical trials in Myanmar, Thailand, and Vietnam

A new study led by Assistant Prof Marco J Haenssgen demonstrated that contextual factors like local health policies influence the results of clinical trials of medical interventions. Involving biomarker test trials in Myanmar, Thailand, and Vietnam, the landmark study calls for the routine collection of social data alongside clinical trials to improve the local appropriateness of medical interventions and help researchers interpret their findings.

Wed 13 February 2019, 11:48

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