About the Developmental Leadership Program (DLP)

The Developmental Leadership Program (DLP) is an international research initiative that explores how leadership, power and political processes drive or block successful development.

DLP focuses on the crucial role of home-grown leaderships and coalitions in forging legitimate institutions that promote developmental outcomes, such as sustainable growth, political stability and inclusive social development.

Working Propositions

Six organising propositions underpin our work:

  1. The forms and processes of leadership directly influence the nature and quality of institutions and the patterns of state-building.
  2. Developmental ‘leadership’ is a political process, involving the legitimacy, authority and capacity to mobilise people and resources, and to forge coalitions, in pursuit of developmental goals.
  3. Coalitions (formal and informal) are groups of leaders and organisations that come together to achieve objectives they could not achieve on their own.
  4. Coalitions are the key political mechanisms that can resolve collective action problems, and are often based on prior networks.
  5. Institutions matter, but more attention needs to be given to issues of politics, power and agency, and therefore to the role of leaders, organisations and coalitions in shaping effective institutions.
  6. Domestic leaders, elites and coalitions are the agents required to contest, negotiate and devise legitimate, effective and durable institutions.

A global partnership

DLP is based at the University of Birmingham (UK) and involves a global partnership of leading academic institutions. For example, DLP is working closely with University College London, where DLP's Deputy Director of Research, Dr David Hudson, is based, and La Trobe University in Melbourne, where Chris Roche, DLP's senior research partner in located.

DLP's independent program of research is supported by the Australian Government. The DLP team is working with development agencies around the world, including the United Nations Development Programme, the World Bank, the Commonwealth Secretariat, and the UK Government's Department for International Development.

About DLP

The Developmental Leadership Program (DLP) is an international research initiative that explores how leadership, power and political processes drive or block successful development.

DLP focuses on the crucial role of home-grown leaderships and coalitions in forging legitimate political settlements and institutions that promote developmental outcomes, such as sustainable growth, political stability and inclusive social development.

Find out more

News

Somaliland: When less was more

Friday 13th May 2016

How the domestic drivers of peace and development work in the absence of external intervention is examined in an open-access International Affairs article by Dr Sarah Phillips.

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Yemen - looking beyond counterterrorism

Wednesday 4th May 2016

Today's report by the UK Parliament's International Development Committee on the crisis in Yemen calls for an independent investigation into suspected breaches of international humanitarian law, including by the Saudi-led coalition forces. In her evidence submission, Dr Sarah Phillips drew on research supported by DLP to highlight the risks of an international response to Yemen that focuses on counterterrorism and is dominated by Saudi Arabia.

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Follow: @dlprog