I am a member of one of the largest development and humanitarian Facebook groups and one question that has been coming up several times, probably because it is that time of the year when members start thinking about their plans for the autumn, is about study advice for MA program in the field of development and humanitarian studies.
Many of the queries a quite specific, a bit along the lines of “I’m looking for a free, online, part-time MA in child rights & accountability in humanitarian emergencies in sub-Saharan Africa-ideally in French”. Given the size of the group and the crowd’s expertise this may not be an impossible question to ask, but as an academic I would like to take this opportunity and zoom out a bit for some general reflections on MA programs and what they can and very often cannot deliver.
We just received a record number of 26 MA theses that need grading, I managed to publish a new book review & there's plenty #globaldev stuff to read as well
Happy weekend! My quotes of the week
The process of receiving, studying and responding to an RFP doesn’t do
much to further a relationship. I get a general email, read a general
document and write a response. There’s no space built in to that process
for us to get to know one another. Instead, you are left making assumptions about me, and I about you – based on a single RFP. (Mary Cahalane)“The
reason we have the triple threats of disconnection of people from
society, mistrust of institutions, and the rising tide of populism is
because we have structurally underinvested in [civil society],”(...) “We have let the local community pillar break down and wither.” (Andy Haldane, Chief Economist Bank of England)Enjoy!
This is in many ways a #globaldev link review that captures the essence of why I started this project some years ago: Lots of different, personal reflections in many different formats, insights into very different 'development' organizations & introductions to important research of great colleagues!
My quotes of the week: Frontex
is turning into an information hub, (...) Its new powers on
data processing and sharing can have a major impact on the rights of
persons, beyond the protection of personal data. (Biometrics: The new frontier of EU migration policy in Niger)
Are big people – the ‘heroes’ as they have been called, of ‘epic narratives’ – flattered and misled by the deference with which they are treated, and by the way their misbehaviours are tolerated because they are adulated as gurus? Do their charisma, ego, power and personal dominance combine to inflict on them awesome learning disabilities? Can this be researched and documented, and can future gen…
We are half-way through our MA thesis presentation seminar and my head is spinning (in a good way!) from all the great work our students have been doing, pushing the boundaries of 'communication for development'. Great work featuring Cambodia, Ethiopia, Spain, Senegal, Thailand, India, Palestine, digital health, immigration discourses and child marriage! Very proud teacher day(s)! Enjoy! My quotes of the week: Sometimes, don’t apply for a grant that might be a better fit for an organization led by
and serving people of color. Be aware of how you may be perpetuating
things like Trickle-Down Community Engagement (TDCE), where your org
gets significant funds which you then trickle down a small amount to
small grassroots organizations. Don’t be a gatekeeper. And don’t ask us
to do stuff for free. (Vu Le in Why more and more executive directors of color are leaving their positions, and what we need to do about it)One individual was
refused because they said ‘on the balan…
The David Lammy/White Saviour versus Stacey Dooley/Comic Relief debate is an excellent opportunity to look at some of the core elements of ritual communication behind many debates in international development-especially when charities and celebrities are involved!
At the time of writing the debate has already followed the first seven or eight steps and I’m pretty sure that it will go full circle between now and Red Nose Day 2020…
1. Don’t learn from past debates It is worth remembering that this is not some obscure debate a few development bloggers have pointed out. In late 2017, Comic Relief got called out for their video of sending Ed Sheeran to Liberia.
The Sheeran-fronted Comic Relief
video, during which the singer offers to pay hotel costs for street
children in Liberia, verged on “poverty tourism”, according to the jury. (...)“Ed Sheeran has good intentions,” she said. “But the problem is the
video is focused on Ed Sheera…