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We’re the Global Development Institute at The University of Manchester: where critical thinking meets social justice. Each episode we will bring you the latest thinking, insights and debate in development studies.

We’re the Global Development Institute at The University of Manchester: where critical thinking meets social justice. Each episode we will bring you the latest thinking, insights and debate in development studies.


United Kingdom


We’re the Global Development Institute at The University of Manchester: where critical thinking meets social justice. Each episode we will bring you the latest thinking, insights and debate in development studies.




Uneven and combined (state) capitalism with Ilias Alami & Adam Dixon

Nick Jepson talks to Ilias Alami and Adam Dixon about their recent talk at the Global Development Institute. The talk blurb is below: The talk contributes to the development of state capitalism as a reflexively critical project focusing on the morphology of present-day capitalism, and particularly on the changing role of the state. We bring analytical clarity to state capitalism studies by offering a rigorous definition of its object of investigation, and by demonstrating how the category...


How to fight inequality(and why that fight needs you) with Ben Phillips

Inequality is the crisis of our time. The growing gap between a few at the top and the rest of society damages us all. No longer able to deny the crisis, every government in the world is now pledged to fix it – and yet it keeps on getting worse. This talk focuses on his new book, and Ben Phillips has shown why, in looking for answers, we need to move the spotlight away from the famous faces; how every time inequality has been successfully tackled it has been because of people pushing from...


Imperialism and the Developing World with Atul Kohli

How did Western imperialism shape the developing world? In Imperialism and the Developing World, Atul Kohli tackles this question by analyzing British and American influence on Asia, Africa, the Middle East, and Latin America from the age of the British East India Company to the most recent U.S. war in Iraq. He argues that both Britain and the U.S. expanded to enhance their national economic prosperity, and shows how Anglo-American expansionism hurt economic development in poor parts of the...


How women matter in making change with Sohela Nazneen

Using case studies from research conducted in Nepal, Bangladesh and Uganda, this webinar will reveal how powerful women are critical actors in securing policy change and consolidating policy gains. The webinar explores the different strategies women’s movement actors and women inside the state use behind the scenes to bypass the political gatekeepers and overcome resistance in policy spaces. In all of the case study countries, there is a push-back against women’s rights and the civic space...


Introduction to the African Cities Research Consortium

Catch up with our webinar which introduced the African Cities Research Consortium (ACRC) and outlined how the ACRC and its international partners is planning to tackle complex, political and systemic problems in some of Africa’s fastest-growing urban areas. ACRC has been awarded a contract of £32 million from the UK’s Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) over the next 6 years. Building on the political settlements analysis established by the Effective States and Inclusive...


The politics of managing Covid-19 in China & India with Prerna Singh & Yanzhong Huang

India and China have responded very differently to the lives and livelihoods threats created by Covid-19 and they have experienced very different outcomes. This webinar explores the different ways in which political factors have shaped policy responses to Covid-19 in China and India and the relationships between scientific/technical analysis of the ‘crisis’ and political forces. Can the different policy choices and outcomes be explained by broad-brush concepts, such as democracy and...


How politics shapes development with Sam Hickey

What kind of politics help to secure inclusive development? After 9 years of research across 26 countries, summing up ESID findings hasn’t been simple. But Three Cs kept cropping up: Context, Capacity, Coalitions. Listen to the a lecture on the Three C’s with ESID’s Research Director Professor Sam Hickey


In Conversation: Chrissie Wellington OBE

In this special podcast we sat down for a chat with Chrissie Wellington OBE, who was the 2020 recipient of The University of Manchester Outstanding Alumni Award. The four-time World Ironman Champion and current Global Head of Health and Wellbeing at Parkrun, talked about her time at Manchester, what attracted her to International Development, her remarkable sporting career and why her current work is, even more so since Covid-19, so important. Chrissie Wellington graduated in 2001 with an MA...


Covid-19, garment workers & the development challenges in the Global South with Mark Anner

Mark Anner will share findings from his survey data on the impact of March 2020 order cancellations by major apparel brands and retailers with global supplier factories (USD 40 billion), which left millions of low-income workers (mostly young women) without income. A subsequent campaign to pressure these corporations to ‘#payup” was largely successful. Dr. Anner will then draw on his October 2020 research report to examine how, in the context of new lockdowns, current orders are drying up,...


Political Economies of energy transition with Kathryn Hochstetler

Wind power has expanded quickly in Brazil, while solar power lags there and both wind and solar power have struggled to take off in South Africa. Professor Kathryn Hochstetler argues that four different political economies - climate change, industrial policy, consumption and distribution, and siting - help account for energy transition. However, coalitions are being built on each of these at the same time, potentially interlocking to reinforce or counter-balance each other. Professor Kathryn...


Africa- 75 years after the Manchester Pan-African Congress with Amani Abou-Zeid

Dr Amani Abou-Zeid of the African Union discusses Africa: 75 years after the Manchester Pan-African Congress. Her talk was part of a symposium to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the 5th Pan-African Congress which was held in Manchester. Dr Amani Abou-Zeid is currently the African Union Commissioner for Infrastructure, Energy, ICT and Tourism. She is an international development expert with more than 30 years’ experience and has a held roles at the United Nations Development Programme and...


Covid-19 and the Future of Global Value Chains

The Covid-19 pandemic created a major shock to the global economy. The ramifications of this shock are reverberating through global value chains to reach workers and sites of production throughout the world. These ramifications are both short and long term. In the short term, the crisis was a major shock for developing economies particularly those who rely on exports through GVCs as global lead firms cancelled orders and workers were terminated often with very little protection. This webinar...


Covid-19 in Kenya’s informal settlements with Charity Mumbi & Jack Makau

Charity Mumbi and Jack Makau work for Muungano wa Wanavijiji, a social movement of 'slum' residents and urban poor people in Kenya, affiliated to SDI International. In this podcast they describe the last few months of working through the initial outbreak of Covid-19, outlining how communities and their organisations have been responding. Their agile initial approaches, alongside a longstanding ability to accurately map dense informal settlements has led to new partnerships with the Kenyan...


Migration and development with Tanja Bastia and Ronald Skeldon

In this special podcast, we are lucky to be joined by the editors of the newly published Routledge Handbook of Migration and Development, Tanja Bastia and Ronald Skeldon. In this episode they talk about their long-term collaboration in the fields of migration and development and their wish to build on long-standing research by bringing together established thinkers and new areas of research – an approach which has culminated in this handbook. In addition to their own explanation of why this...


In conversation: Alicya Mamo and Shamima Khonat founders of Electric Bazaar

In the latest episode of our ‘In Conversation’ podcast we caught up with Shamima and Alicya; two Manchester Alumni whose fashion business was recently highly commended for social innovation at the Manchester Making A Difference Awards 2020. Listen here to find out how they came up with the idea, what empowerment and sustainability means to them, their goals for the future and how studying at the GDI, in particular the Poverty, Inequality and Development pathway, helped to shape their...


Deindustrialisation in the Global South with Seth Schindler & Tom Gillespie

Seth Schindler & Tom Gillespie discuss their new research on deindustrialisation in the Global South. Seth and Tom have recently published an article on 'Deindustrialization in cities of the Global South' with Nicola Banks, Mustafa Kemal Bayırbağ, Himanshu Burte, J. Miguel Kanai & Neha Sami.


In conversation: Siobhan McGrath on forced labour and marketising anti-slavery

In this episode Dr Rory Horner talked to Dr Siobhán McGrath about her research into forced labour and the marketising anti-slavery. Siobhán McGrath is Assistant Professor in Human Geography at Durham University Rory Horner, Senior Lecturer in Globalisation and Political Economy in the Global Development Institute.


In conversation: Jelmer Kamstra and Zoe Abrahamson discuss donor funding, NGOs and governance

In this episode, GDI's Nicola Banks talks to Jelmer Kamstra and Zoe Abrahamson about the political role of NGOs and how donor funding can support those. Jelmer Kamstra has been Senior Policy Officer at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands in the Civil Society Division since 2015. Starting January 2020, Jelmer has taken up a new position as Senior Researcher at the Policy and Operations Evaluation Department (IOB) of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Zoe Abrahamson is Bond’s...


In Conversation: Nicholas Jepson on China's impact on the Global South

In this episode, Nicholas Jepson talks to Seth Schindler about his new book ‘In China’s wake: how the commodity boom transformed development strategies in the global south. In China’s Wake reveals the surprising connections among these three phenomena. Nicholas Jepson shows how Chinese demand not only transformed commodity markets but also provided resource-rich states with the financial leeway to set their own policy agendas, insulated from the constraints and pressures of capital markets...


Lecture: Luis Eduardo Perez Murcia on migration, ageing and home

Luis Eduardo Perez Murcia, University of Trento, recently visited the GDI to give a talk entitled 'I am afraid of dying without seeing my daughter again': Looking at the Aging-Home-Migration Nexus Scholarly research exploring the aging-migration nexus has significantly increased in the last decade. The role of home in this nexus, however, has received considerably less academic attention. Against this background, this paper explores whether and how migration shapes the experiences of home of...