International Development Studies

girl and sheep

Globalisation has given rise to new and intensified flows and circulations. Migrants, tourists, traders, international entrepreneurs, students and expats are connecting different places on the globe. The same counts for transnational investments, remittances and chains of exotic fruits as well as industrial components.

In this increasingly interconnected and changing world, one cannot understand development as an isolated and place-based process. Development in one place is impacted by development in the other. Places and spaces are thus linked through flows of food, capital, people and ideas.

These ‘global’ flows and local ways of handling them shape the development trajectories and livelihood possibilities. For people to enjoy benefits they need to be able to ‘plug in’ and surf on the right flows and networks.

Researchers at International Development Studies aim to gain an understanding of the consequences of new flows of people, goods, capital and knowledge for inclusive and sustainable development in Asia, Africa and Latin America. Who benefits from these opportunities? Who are excluded? And how do these global flows shape the local spaces people are residing, studying and working in? These are questions that are at the heart of the International Development Studies research section.

We strongly adhere to an empirical approach, informed by theoretical concepts. Fieldwork is a component of most of our research. We believe that to understand what development means for whom, engagement with people is necessary. Therefore we use multi-stakeholder approaches and bottom-up data collection methods, often combining quantitative and qualitative analysis (mixed methods).

In our research we focus on three main themes: flows of capital, flows of people and translocal development. Our involvement in the LANDac partnership and the Shared Value Foundation shows our strong engagement with society.

Read more about our research


For individual members of this research section, please see the staff listing.