Doing Development Differently workshop - Jakarta 2017

How the concept of Thinking and Working Politically (TWP) translates into international development practice was at the heart of the 2017 Doing Development Differently workshop. See governance specialist Graham Teskey's reflections on the workshop on From Poverty to Power (30 March).

The two-day workshop, Implementing The ‘New’ Development Agenda, was hosted by the Knowledge Sector Initiative (KSI), the KOMPAK program and The World Bank in Jakarta from 15–16 March, with support from the Australian Embassy Jakarta. Around half of the 200+ participants were officials, policymakers and practitioners from Indonesia’s government, civil service and local organisations. They were joined by researchers and by staff from donor organisations and NGOs. DLP was represented by Research Fellow Caryn Peiffer and Research Associate Ed Laws.

In his opening remarks, Graham Teskey said that the principles of Doing Development Differently, including the need to understand the political context of donor programs and initiatives, are now at the forefront of a more mature approach to thinking and practice in international development. The workshop’s core themes were designed to focus attention on what politically-smart gender programming looks like, and what practical help could be given to both practitioners and governments to support this way of working.

Caryn PeifferThe issue of gender-blind TWP was a central feature of the workshop agenda, and DLP’s Caryn Peiffer helped facilitate a break-out group that considered the issue of gender, power and inclusiveness in program planning and implementation. Their discussions discussed the principles of TWP and gender in the context of real-world problems, such as cultural resistance to the inclusion of women and other groups in mainstream decision-making, and considered how participants could work more politically on such issues in their day-to-day practice.

DLP Research Associate Ed Laws at the Jakarta workshopEd Laws shared DLP findings and resources in the ‘marketplace’ area of the workshop, where about a dozen organisations were presenting their work. Delegates were particularly interested in DLP’s Everyday Political Analysis (EPA) framework and the ease with which it could be applied to some of the examples and case studies discussed in the workshop’s plenary sessions.

Over the two days of the workshop, delegates discussed practical challenges, such as finding staff and allies who are able to work politically and iteratively, or avoiding an automatic default to technical ‘solutions’.

One breakout group was asked to consider the goal of ‘Building your dream team: politically astute, problem driven and adaptive’. There was general agreement that an effective, politically informed approach to development work demanded flexible and open-minded staff. However, some participants felt that insistence on technical and academic credentials often tended to inhibit the recruitment of staff who had the management and networking skills required for DDD/TWP.

Ed Laws said: “I came away from the conference with the sense that DDD proponents are now moving beyond flexible and responsive ways of designing and implementing projects, to engage more explicitly with local political actors, interests and coalitions in support of positive change.”

See more resources from the workshop and graphic notes.

Related items

Doing Development Differently workshop - Jakarta 2017

Thursday 30th March 2017

Putting the concept of Thinking and Working Politically into practice was at the heart of a workshop on 15-16 March attended by more than 200 delegates from the field of international development. Delegates from the government, civil service and local organisations of the host country, Indonesia, were joined by academics, including DLP researchers, and staff from donor organisations and NGOs.

Read more

How Change Happens: Australian seminars 3-6 April by Duncan Green

Tuesday 21st March 2017

Dr Duncan Green presents the ideas from his recent book, How Change Happens, in a series of appearances across Australia next month. Organised by the Research for Development Impact (RDI) Network, the events are co-presented by DLP in partnership with a range of development and research agencies.

Read more

Power and systems, and their role in developmental change: Guest seminar with Duncan Green

Tuesday 21st February 2017

Seeing power and complex social systems clearly is the first step towards supporting positive developmental change, says Oxfam Strategic Director and DLP research partner Duncan Green. He discussed the themes of his latest book at a recent International Development Department guest seminar at the University of Birmingham.

Read more

New role for Alina Rocha Menocal

Monday 31st October 2016

After many significant contributions to DLP's research, events and impact, Alina Rocha Menocal is now moving on to take up a USAID Senior Democracy Fellowship. Alina will also continue her role as a Research Fellow in ODI's Politics and Governance Programme, on a part-time basis, and we are delighted that she will retain close links with DLP as a Research Associate.

Read more

Thinking and working politically on corruption DSA conference panel

Monday 4th April 2016

DLP Director Heather Marquette is convening a panel on 'Thinking and working politically about corruption and anti-corruption' at this year's Development Studies Association conference in September. The call for papers is open until 25 April.

Read more

Collaborative research on digital feminism in Fiji

Monday 4th April 2016

DLP researcher Tait Brimacombe and researchers from the University of the South Pacific are exploring how feminists and women's rights activists in Fiji are using digital technologies.

Read more

Masculinities and femininities in South East Asia

Friday 11th March 2016

Findings from a case study of gender and sexuality confusions and contradictions were presented by DLP research fellow Gillian Fletcher as part of a seminar series at Monash Asia Institute, Melbourne.

Read more

Trending Trousers: Debating 'Kastom', Clothing and Gender in the Vanuatu Mediascape

Friday 12th February 2016

Debate over women's clothing and how issues of gender equality are reflected in such discussions is the subject of an article by Tait Brimacombe, published in the Asia Pacific Journal of Anthropology.

Read more

Sharing findings on 'Dilemmas of international aid'

Monday 18th January 2016

Niheer Dasandi was among the speakers at a Global Governance Institute event, Power, Development and Messy Politics: Dilemmas of International Aid, on 18 January. He shared findings on how donors could think politically about difficult choices.

Read more

Addressing gender in impact evaluation

Tuesday 3rd November 2015

What questions need to be considered when assessing gender-related impact? What methods and tools can help assess gender in impact evaluation of interventions? These are some of the issues addressed by DLP Research Fellow Gillian Fletcher in a new ODI paper.

Read more

The Governance Practitioner's Notebook: new OECD resource

Thursday 8th October 2015

This new resource from the OECD-DAC Network on Governance, launched today, provides a collection of briefings for governance practitioners in development agencies. DLP's directors, Heather Marquette and David Hudson, are among the contributors.

Read more

DLP director at European Development Days

Friday 18th September 2015

DLP Director Heather Marquette comments on the complexity of corruption at this summer's EU European Development Days.

Read more

DFID learning event on analysing political settlements

Thursday 27th August 2015

DLP Director Heather Marquette and Senior Research Fellow Alina Rocha Menocal joined a DFID panel discussion today. This asked: 'How can we Analyse Political Settlements, Institutions & Citizens and get a Better Line of Sight to our Country and Sector Programming?'

Read more

Women's empowerment and conflict in Colombia: new case study

Tuesday 21st July 2015

DLP Senior Research Fellow Alina Rocha Menocal has co-authored a new Development Progress case study from ODI.

Read more

‘If the herd of cows splits up, the tiger can eat them’: civil society and social justice in Myanmar

Friday 10th July 2015

On 10 July DLP Research Fellow Gillian Fletcher brought together a panel of civil society actors from across Myanmar for the Australian Myanmar Institute conference. They discussed how to use a diversity and values framework to promote equality and social justice.

Read more

Exploring the international political economy of development

Friday 15th May 2015

DLP research fellow Dr Niheer Dasandi was among the speakers at the New Directions in International Political Economy conference in Warwick this week. He and DLP's Dr David Hudson will be editing Edward Elgar's forthcoming 'Handbook of the International Political Economy of Development'.

Read more

How can practitioners 'do governance differently'? DAC GovNet discussions

Wednesday 13th May 2015

Dr David Hudson spoke at an OECD DAC GovNet meeting on 13 May, on how the 'doing governance differently' agenda can be translated into practice.

Read more

New DLP research fellows

Thursday 12th March 2015

We are delighted to welcome Tait Brimacombe and Gillian Fletcher to the DLP team at La Trobe University in Melbourne. Their research will explore issues including women's involvement in political processes, and strengthening capacity for development through communication.

Read more

Workshop on 'Doing development differently: can it be managed?'

Tuesday 10th March 2015

This public event in London on April 2 will explore how to support 'Doing development differently'. It is being organised by the University of Birmingham, ODI and RTI International. Prof Richard Batley (UoB), Dr David Booth (ODI) and DLP's Dr David Hudson will chair the workshop.

Read more

New evidence paper on corruption

Thursday 5th March 2015

What conditions make corruption possible? What are the real costs of corruption and how can it be fought effectively? A new evidence paper that addresses these questions has been written for DFID by a research team led by DLP Senior Research Fellow Alina Rocha Menocal and Nils Taxell of the U4 Anti-Corruption Resource Centre.

Read more

Middle class attitudes and the politics of poverty reduction in India

Monday 26th January 2015

A new DLP research paper asks what makes the middle classes oppose or support initiatives intended to lift people out of poverty, and how the development community can secure their approval of such policies.

Read more

Active citizenship and how change happens

Monday 19th January 2015

Ten Active Citizenship Case Studies and a lessons paper by Duncan Green have just been published by Oxfam. These are part of a research project on 'How change happens', which DLP is supporting.

Read more

New book chapter: contribution to 'The Politics of Inclusive Development'

Monday 12th January 2015

Senior researcher Claire Mcloughlin is one of the contributors to 'The Politics of Inclusive Development', published this month by OUP. The book is dedicated to the memory of the late Adrian Leftwich, DLP's founding Director of Research.

Read more

Elites in fragile states: from predation to protection

Monday 1st December 2014

On 4 December, Research Fellow Suda Perera will present DLP findings at an expert meeting to help inform Dutch development policy on security and justice.

Read more

Parliamentary strengthening: fix the car, or worry about the driver?

Monday 24th November 2014

In a guest post today for the blog From Poverty to Power, Alina Rocha Menocal takes stock of the evidence on parliamentary strengthening.

Read more

Seminars by Duncan Green at La Trobe University

Friday 21st November 2014

On Monday 24 November, Dr Duncan Green will give two public seminars at La Trobe University in Melbourne.

Read more

Contributions to debate on aid and anti-corruption work

Monday 10th November 2014

DLP's Director Heather Marquette has commented in 'The Guardian' on the UK aid watchdog's criticism of DFID's impact in tackling petty corruption. She calls the ICAI report 'a wasted opportunity to rethink how we deliver aid with integrity'. Today in 'The Conversation' she suggests ways forward.

Read more

Contribution to Guardian discussion on fragile states

Thursday 6th November 2014

Research Fellow Suda Perera was among the expert panellists for a Guardian Development Professionals Network Q&A on 6 November. She drew on her recent research in the DRC to discuss the issue, 'After aid, how can development work in unstable states?'

Read more

Political Settlements: the first of DLP's concept briefs

Monday 6th October 2014

What exactly are 'political settlements'? This Concept Brief, the first of a new series, sets out key elements of this increasingly prominent idea. It suggests why it is important, and what policy implications follow from it.

Read more

Introducing DLP's new Concept Briefs

Friday 3rd October 2014

Our new series of Concept Briefs will provide concise introductions to some of the key concepts used in analysing the politics of governance in developing countries.

Read more

Cash transfers: why elites' attitudes matter

Wednesday 24th September 2014

A new DLP Research Paper presents findings from Malawi on elites' attitudes to poverty and their opinions on how to reduce it. The findings question the sustainability of cash transfer programmes beyond donor funding.

Read more

Research Fellow vacancies: work with DLP at La Trobe University, Melbourne

Thursday 28th August 2014

Two exciting opportunities have arisen for an accomplished research fellow and senior research fellow to work with DLP at La Trobe University's Institute for Human Security and Social Change. VACANCIES NOW CLOSED.

Read more

Security and justice: the first in a new series of literature reviews

Monday 21st July 2014

The first of the Developmental Leadership Program's 'State of the Art' papers is now available. Our SOTA series aims to lay the groundwork for future DLP research by setting out what existing research evidence and development practice tell us about the politics of development in key areas.

Read more

David Hudson 100K run in memory of DLP founder Adrian Leftwich

Saturday 28th June 2014

On 28 June DLP Deputy Director David Hudson ran 100km along the Grand Union Canal, raising over £1000 for Cancer Research UK.

Read more

DLP's core research themes

Friday 30th May 2014

Five core themes run through the heart of this new-look Developmental Leadership Program website. They are signposts to help visitors explore our research, and they are the building blocks of the new strategy that will guide our work over the next three years.

Read more

New paper on political economy analysis in donor agencies

Thursday 17th April 2014

Has political economy analysis lost its way? Donors Doing Political Economy Analysis: From Process to Product (and Back Again?) is a new DLP research paper by Dr Jonathan Fisher and Dr Heather Marquette.

Read more

New DLP research on the Medellin Miracle

Tuesday 4th March 2014

From the most murderous city on earth to 'a new global standard for urban policy': Kate Maclean's DLP Research Paper unpacks the politics of change in the wake of crisis.

Read more

New book on social sector policy reform in the Philippines

Tuesday 4th March 2014

'Room For Maneuver' explores the politics of social sector policy reform in the Philippines. The book, co-edited by the late Adrian Leftwich, highlights lessons for reform advocates.

Read more

Adrian Leftwich Memorial Conference

Friday 24th January 2014

We were delighted that over 100 scholars and development practitioners joined us for the Adrian Leftwich Memorial Conference on 24 January. We commemorated DLP's founding Director of Research with a fascinating day of reflection and discussion.

Read more

Making Politics Practical II: Development Politics and the Changing Aid Environment

Friday 15th November 2013

The PSA Development Politics Group and the University of Birmingham's International Development Department jointly hosted a workshop on the 15th November 2013. This explored the '(re)politicisation' of development studies and the need to move beyond criticism to constructive engagement with policy makers.

Read more

Governance, Politics and Development in the Pacific - A literature Survey

Thursday 31st January 2013

The Australian Aid Program has a strong interest in development issues in the Pacific. Though traditionally it has taken a rather technical, administrative and managerial approach to such issues, its recent public literature (and that of other aid agencies) reflects the green shoots of important new thinking around the importance of political and governance processes that can decisively promote or restrain development - and hence a more effective use of aid resources. This DLP Background Paper provides a short survey of the literature in the field and an assessment of the extent to which such research and policy announcements have really helped to provide and institutionalise a more politically informed understanding of development.

Read more

'Reform' Coalitions: A New Concept Paper

Wednesday 9th May 2012

'Reform' coalitions have been noted by many authors in a very diverse range of literatures. But what do we know about them? And should we not understand better their role in the politics of development? What are the circumstances of their provenance, and the political conditions and characteristics of successful ones? Can it be demonstrated that such coalitions have contributed directly to growth and poverty reduction? And, if so, can or should donors work politically to facilitate, encourage and promote their emergence and functioning? In this paper Caryn Peiffer identifies some of the common features of these coalitions and suggests some of the important questions that will be explored by further DLP research.

Read more

Riker in the Tropics: Revisiting the Theory of Political Coalitions (1962)

Wednesday 25th April 2012

As part of DLP's coalitions series, this paper revisits one of the earliest attempts to develop a theory of political coalitions, or perhaps a political theory of coalitions - William Riker's classic account of The Theory of Political Coalitions, first published in the early 1960s. While Riker's account focused essentially on legislative and electoral coalitions in stable institutional environments, many of the insights and questions in the book - such as, size, duration, stability, and coherence of goals - remain relevant for a wide range of reform and developmental coalitions in the politics of developing countries. The paper reviews Riker's theory, assesses its limitations, and suggests a series of important issues that require attention.

Read more

Coalitions in the Politics of Development - A Workshop Report

Wednesday 18th April 2012

'Coalitions' are part and parcel of everyday politics, everywhere, nationally and sub-nationally and in all sectors and issue areas. They are also central to the inner politics that shape political settlements and help solve collective action problems. Yet we know very little about what makes for successful coalitions, or what the international community can do to support the emergence of developmental coalitions. The workshop brought together practitioners, researchers and theorists from developed and developing societies and this report summarises the important continuities, generalizations and messages that we identified. It is the first in a series of papers that seek to clarify this pervasive feature of the politics of development.

Read more

Thinking and Working Politically Workshop - PNG

Thursday 16th February 2012

The latest in the, 'Thinking and Working Politically in Development Assistance' workshop series, hosted by the Developmental Leadership Program, in partnership with The Asia Foundation, took place in Port Moresby (Papua New Guinea) and Canberra (Australia) in December 2011. The workshops, designed to create a deeper understanding of the concept of 'thinking and working politically', encouraged participants to explore how this approach can be translated into aid programming in Papua New Guinea. Like earlier activities in the series, these workshops set out to provide an overview of the latest thinking and strategies for improving aid effectiveness using a political analysis approach, with a particular focus on the importance of politics and leadership.

Read more

Coalitions Workshop Sydney 15-16 February 2012

Wednesday 15th February 2012

Despite a potentially huge range of empirical evidence and examples, our understanding of how coalitions are formed, managed and funded, and what makes for successful coalitions remains remarkably limited. The purpose of the workshop is therefore to deepen our understanding of these crucial developmental political processes, to help classify different forms of coalitions, to derive significant policy and programmatic messages, and to formulate guidelines for the international community about how to broker, facilitate and support progressive developmental coalitions across sectors and issue areas. The workshop will draw on the rich experience and thinking of its participants - a mix of distinguished researchers and practitioners from a variety of contexts.

Read more

Princeton University Program: Innovations for Successful Societies

Thursday 6th October 2011

Policy-makers, researchers and practitioners can learn a great deal about the complexity of the politics of reform from the direct experiences of reform leaderships in developing countries. The Innovations for Successful Societies at Princeton University is building a series of case studies and recordings of interviews with developmental leaders from around the world. This rich source of information will be of great value to those interested in gaining a deeper understanding of the role which developmental leaderships and coalitions can play in promoting locally appropriate institutional and policy innovation and reform in the diverse contexts of their own countries.

Read more

Working Politically for Pro-Poor Policies in Indonesia

Friday 5th August 2011

This excellent paper by the Asia Foundation explores the politics of local coalitions working to expand coverage of health services for the poor in two municipalities in Central Java, Indonesia - Semarang and Pekalongan. The research, by Laurel MacLaren, Alam Surya Putra and Erman Rahman, shows that facilitating and supporting the emergence and activities of coalitions of leaders and CSOs (Civil Society Organizations) can be a highly effective means of achieving pro-poor policy outcomes in some institutional contexts.

Read more

A Report on DLP's first Research and Policy Workshop in Frankfurt

Monday 20th June 2011

There is now wide recognition that political processes - and especially the role of leaderships and coalitions - are fundamental in shaping and sustaining the institutional and policy environment that promotes or frustrates sustainable economic growth and inclusive social development. That being so, what is to be done? What does it mean for development policy and practice? In seeking to address some of these issues, the DLP held its first Research and Policy Workshop in Frankfurt in March, 2011. This paper provides a summary of the key findings, insights and initial guidance arising from the workshop and from recent phases of DLP research.

Read more

UN Women International Roundtable in Egypt

Thursday 2nd June 2011

Dr. Mariz Tadros presented the findings from her recent DLP research paper, "Working Politically Behind Red Lines: Structure and agency in a comparative study of women's coalitions in Egypt and Jordan", at the International Roundtable: "Pathways for Women in Democratic Transitions - International Experiences and Lessons Learned", on June 2nd 2011in Cairo. The objective of this Roundtable was to explore paths towards democratic transitions that ensure good governance, gender equality and social justice.

Read more

Research and Policy Workshop in Frankfurt

Monday 4th April 2011

The Developmental Leadership Program (DLP) held its first Research and Policy Workshop in Frankfurt on 10th and 11th March, 2011, facilitated by the GIZ. The focus of the DLP is on the role of developmental leaderships and coalitions in the politics of sustainable growth, political stability and inclusive social development. The purpose of the workshop was to explore and elaborate the policy, programme and operational implications of the recently completed phase of DLP research and to map the way forward for future research, policy and communications activities.

Read more

New Paper: Working Politically Behind Red Lines: Women's Coalitions in Egypt and Jordan

Wednesday 23rd February 2011

"Engaging politically behind red lines" examines six cases of collective initiatives to advance women's rights in Egypt and Jordan between 2000 and 2010. The study explores what accounts for the emergence, success and failure of women's coalitions in these two countries. Using a case study approach, the study examines the interface between collective agency and structure in two national contexts characterized by authoritarian rule and powerful Islamist movements strongly opposed to any structural transformation of gender hierarchies.

Read more

New Paper: The Politics of a Women's Rights Coalition in South Africa

Wednesday 23rd February 2011

How do women's rights groups campaign for vital institutional reform of archaic laws on sexual violence in new democracies? How can they best 'work politically' to achieve positive outcomes? What lessons are there for donors and supporters? This research paper uses findings from a study of the National Working Group on Sexual Offences to demonstrate how civil society coalitions may draw on and expand their elite networks and exploit political and institutional arrangements to build developmental partnerships.

Read more

Workshop: Political dimensions of development programming

Tuesday 15th February 2011

The Developmental Leadership Program, in partnership with The Asia Foundation (TAF), ran the second in a series of workshops entitled 'Political Dimensions of Development Programming' in Manila, Philippines from 15-16 February 2011. The workshop brought together TAF Representatives working in the Philippines and the region, AusAID staff based in the Philippines, and selected non-government partners.

Read more

New paper on 'Growth Alliances: Insights from Egypt'

Wednesday 5th January 2011

A recent paper in Business and Politics explores the emergence, evolution and forms of 'growth alliances' in Egypt. Professors Abla Abdel-Latif, of the American University in Cairo, and Hubert Schmitz, of the Institute of Development Studies, show how largely informal and politically-negotiated relations helped to shape alliances between some business sectors and key policy-makers without apparently becoming abused for private gain.

Read more

Political Dimensions of Development Programming

Thursday 2nd December 2010

A joint DLP-Asia Foundation workshop on the Political Dimensions of Development Programming was held in Canberra, Australia, on 2nd and 3rd December 2010 for staff of AusAID.

Read more

GTZ Brown Bag Lunch

Monday 22nd March 2010

Adrian Leftwich gave a brown bag lunch at GTZ talking on: "Beyond Institutions: Leaders, Elites and Coalitions in the Politics of Development"

Read more

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

Doing Development Differently workshop - Jakarta 2017

Thursday 30th March 2017

Putting the concept of Thinking and Working Politically into practice was at the heart of a workshop on 15-16 March attended by more than 200 delegates from the field of international development. Delegates from the government, civil service and local organisations of the host country, Indonesia, were joined by academics, including DLP researchers, and staff from donor organisations and NGOs.

Read more

DLP shares research at FCO Africa Study Day

Monday 27th March 2017

DLP findings on the Democratic Republic of Congo were among the topics discussed with with UK diplomats and civil servants at the FCO's Africa Study Day, held at Sandhurst on 21 March. This year's Foreign and Commonwealth Office event was organised by University of Birmingham's International Development Department, home to DLP.

Read more

Follow: @dlprog