IDM095-Theories and Practices of Development

Module Provider: School of Agriculture, Policy and Development
Number of credits: 20 [10 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Autumn / Spring term module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Module version for: 2016/7

Module Convenor: Dr Alex Arnall


Summary module description:
IDM095 examines contemporary theories and practices of international development and poverty reduction in developing countries around the world.

The goal of IDM095 is to provide students with an overview of the main concepts, ideas and interventions in international development theory and practice. It demonstrates the complex interactions between the social, economic and political factors that make up processes of development at multiple levels, from local to global, and between industrialised and industrialising nations.

Assessable learning outcomes:
By the end of this module, students should be able to:
•Describe different approaches to development theory and practice, and their links to changing ideas about poverty reduction and social justice in developing countries;
•Explain the interrelationships between local, national and global development processes, and the different stakeholder groups that exist across these different levels; and
•Critically reflect on their personal and professional development as a result of their engagement with the module content, as well as externally-organised events seminars and presentations.

Additional outcomes:
IDM095 is intended to act as a common point of reference for MSc and MA students with an interest in international development at the University of Reading. Through exploration of cross-disciplinary issues, IDM095 will help students to synthesise and consolidate ideas and concepts gained in their wider degree programmes.

Outline content:
IDM001 is divided into four distinct but interrelated parts, each lasting 4-5 weeks. Part 1 will introduce the main theoretical perspectives that have influenced development policy over the past few decades, and Part 2 will familiarise students with some of the key conceptual frameworks that have emerged out of these. Part 3 will introduce and evaluate the main development actors which are responsible for ‘delivering’ development to society, and Part 4 will explore key policy areas and interventions which have particularly caught international attention in recent years.

Individual lectures will be structured as follows:

1. Introduction

2. Modernisation
3. Structuralism
4. Grassroots development
5. Post-development

6. Sustainable livelihoods
7. Ecosystem services and poverty reduction
8. Power concepts and frameworks
9. Political ecology
10. Human rights and development

11. State versus market
12. Case study: The state and market in Mozambique
13. Civil society
14. Community-based development
15. Global actors and globalisation

16. Urbanisation and planning
17. Decentralisation
18. Social protection
19. Displacement and resettlement
20. Security and development

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:
Teaching and learning will be delivered via lectures, group discussions and independent study. New concepts and ideas will be supported by ‘real life’ case studies from developing countries.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 20 20
Seminars 2
Guided independent study 78 80
Total hours by term 100.00 100.00
Total hours for module 200.00

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written exam 60
Written assignment including essay 40

Other information on summative assessment:
Coursework during autumn and spring term: A reflective diary based on attendance at lectures plus additional seminars and events (40%). Completion of the reflective diary will be supported by a two-hour formative exercise during welcome week in autumn term.

Formative assessment methods:

Penalties for late submission:
Penalties for late submission on this module are in accordance with the University policy. Please refer to page 5 of the Postgraduate Guide to Assessment for further information:

Length of examination:
An examination based on the autumn and spring term programmes (60%).

Requirements for a pass:
A mark of 50% overall.

Reassessment arrangements:
An essay of between 2,500 and 3,000 words on a topic chosen from a list given by the module convenor.

Last updated: 24 May 2016

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