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Democratisation and Development (PO9B3)

This module focuses on core debates in the field of development and democratisation. It discusses a broad range of different regions and countries, theories and approaches, methods and techniques, concepts, political debates and policy implications. The module overall is on balance directed more to democratisation than to development, but to the exclusion of neither. Participants are invited to specialise and where relevant may apply the general frameworks to any suitable countries in which they have a particular interest, in the North, South, East or West.

Theories of development have evolved over many years, influenced chiefly by the concerns of economics, political science and sociology. Since the late 1980s, when many countries in Eastern Europe and Africa democratized, a ‘wave’ or waves of democratisation have been a focal point of interest, especially in parts of the developing world and former communist countries. This module explores the relationships – the interface - between development and democratisation, in the context of examining the many different meanings associated with the two central terms. Theories that maintain the two are causally connected in special ways are examined in the light of the evidence: how development influences democracy’s prospects, and democratisation’s significance, whether favourable or unfavourable, for development.

We have an outstanding international reputation in this area with world leading researchers. In addition, we attract a number of internationally renowned researchers to give guest lectures and seminars relating to this field. This module explores a number of cutting-edge research topics and is supported by the ongoing research work within the department. By choosing this module you will be challenged by the dynamism of a theme that is discussed on a daily basis: not just among academics but also in policy papers and the media. This module will give you the tools to effectively interrogate the challenges around democracy and development, through interactive and engaging seminars, readings, guest lecturers, and group tasks.

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Module Director:

Renske Doorenspleet