United Kingdom, London

The Politics of Protest, Development and Social Change

when 1 July 2019 - 19 July 2019
language English
duration 3 weeks
fee GBP 1600

This course provides a critical introduction to the history, nature and impact of social protest and social movements, the politics of neoliberal development and rise of NGOs into a global industry. It analyses how social movements and NGOs have interacted and influenced each other, and how they have globalised. It questions the notion of development as economic growth, assesses the critiques against NGOs as alternatives to state-led development models, considers the concept and the use of humanitarian intervention in diverse contexts, discusses the role of labour and labour organising alongside social movements and explores the extent to which movements are posing a challenge to neoliberal and capitalist development. Finally, it examines both the theoretical basis for social movement and NGO strategies for social change as well as their practical implications, and draws on a number of case studies, exploring what kind of development and social change is possible.

A theoretical consideration of social movements and their relationships to neoliberalism is an important theme for students of Development Studies. The case studies will complement the theory, providing students a comprehensive overview of the conditions of protest in the current global context and the potential for social change. Discussion of the various case studies will equip students with the capacity to analyse questions of strategy in relation to political context. Students will also have the opportunity to discuss and analyse relevant films that examine case studies. Students will conduct field research by participating in a protest or demonstration in London during the course, and undertaking a short practical exercise, either a photo essay or short video of the protest, which they will present to their classmates in the final tutorials. This exercise highlights the importance of experience and participation, in addition to observation and analysis of protest movements.

Course leader

Dr. Feyzi Ismail

Target group

A university student or a graduate at the time of attending the summer school, and 18+ years of age. Professional experience can be acknowledged as equivalent to a university qualification.

Course aim

On successful completion of the course, the student should possess:

-A critical understanding of the key theoretical debates on social movements and NGOs, including an understanding of the various roles these forces play in processes of development and social change.
-An understanding of the nature and history of social protest since the 1960s.
-An understanding of the relationships between NGOs and a range of other development actors, including the state, and knowledge of how these relationships have evolved.
-A capacity to identify, understand and critique a range of theoretical approaches for understanding contemporary social movements, and apply these approaches to practical case studies.

Credits info

Students are usually able to obtain credits from their home institution and typically our courses receive 3 credits in the US system and 7.5 ECTS in the European system. If you intend to claim credits from your home institution, please check the requirements with them before you enrol. We will be happy to assist you in any way we can, however please be aware that the decision to award credits rests with your home institution.

Fee info

GBP 1600: There is a 10% earlybird discount for applications received by 31st March 2019


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