States, political systems and development

Qualifications Duration Start dates Application period
(MPhil also available)
Full time: 3–4 years
Part time: 6–8 years
February and October January to April
PhD (MPhil also available)
Full time: 3–4 years
Part time: 6–8 years
Start dates
February and October
Application period
January to April

Our research in the Development Policy and Practice (DPP) Group seeks to shed light on how the state becomes a driver and an agent of development while contributing to the construction of alternative political systems that challenge the current conceptualisation and practice of development. The DPP Group draws on an extensive network of academic partnerships with researchers, policy makers and grassroots organisations in Latin America and Africa that ensures an integrated analysis of international development.

Within this broad and cross-cutting agenda we focus on:

  • The relationship between development actors, institutions and dynamics of change at the level of political ideas. This further focuses on global justice, cosmopolitanism and politics of development as well as on transnational networks, states and power.
  • At the level of policies, our focus is on the interaction between governance and government and civil society.
  • At the level of actions, research focus is mainly on social movements, participation, conflict and cooperation.

Entry requirements

Minimum 2:1 undergraduate degree (or equivalent). If you are not a UK citizen, you may need to prove your knowledge of English.

Potential research projects

Within the context of development, we are interested in research at the intersection of political ideas, policies and actions of:

  • Social and solidarity economy in low and middle income countries
  • The politics of inclusive development and innovation
  • Co-operative resilience and rural development
  • Alternative political systems and their impact on development processes
  • Local, national, transnational and global governance
  • Civil society, collective action and political networks
  • Global justice and global citizenship
  • Political systems and development
  • Public engagement and new media
  • Knowledge production and transfer, and social learning

Current/recent research projects

  • Politics of inclusive innovation and development in Latin America
  • Co-operative enterprises, innovation and inclusive development in Africa
  • Knowledge production for sustainable bioenergy: an analysis of UK decision processes and priorities
  • Unpacking role of industry associations in diffusion and governance of health innovations in developing countries

Potential supervisors

Fees and funding

UK fee International fee
Full time: £4,786 per year Full time: £12,146 per year
Part time: £2,393 per year Part time: £6,073 per year

Some of our research students are funded via The Grand Union Doctoral Training Partnership; others are self-funded.

For detailed information about fees and funding, visit Fees and studentships.

To see current funded studentship vacancies across all research areas, see Current studentships.


Children playing in Latin America

How to apply

Get in touch

If you have an enquiry specific to this research topic, please contact:

Dr Mark Lamont / Dr Frangton Chivemura, Discipline Convenors
Email: FASS-DPP-PG-Admissions
Phone: +44 (0)1908 653391 / +44 (0)1908 653818

Apply now

If you’re interested in applying for this research topic, please take a look at the application process.