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Development Research Week Tuesday 1 November - Friday 4 November 2016

The Trinity International Development Initiative is pleased to bring you the Trinity Development Research Week from 1 to 4 November 2016. This is a week-long series of events looking at innovative research and critical issues currently facing developing countries.  We have an exciting range of events lined up:

TIME Keynote Address with Professor Paul Glewwe: “Improving School Education Outcomes in Developing Countries: Evidence, Knowledge Gaps, and Policy Implications”, opened by Michael Gaffey, Director General of Irish Aid. Further details here.

UNDP/EC Kapuscinski lecture with Melissa Leach in association with Trinity/UCD MSc in Development Practice: "Challenging Inequalities and Unsustainabilities: The Politics of Transformative Pathways." Further details here.

NOURISH half-day seminar “The Interaction of HIV, Nutrition, and Poverty: Living with the Consequences. Moving from Research to Policy and Practice.” Further details here.

Development Studies Association of Ireland/Irish Forum for Global Health Launch of Student Guidelines for Ethical Fieldwork Overseas.

TIDI Seminar with Dearbhla Glynn on her documentary work "War against women in the Eastern Congo." Further details here.


Symposium: "The UN Sustainable Development Agenda and Global Labour Rights"

The Department of Sociology, in association with the Irish Congress of Trade Unions, and with the support of the Trinity International Development Initiative, is pleased to invite you to a Symposium “The UN Sustainable Development Agenda and Global Labour Rights.”

In September 2015 the United Nations adopted the new Agenda for Sustainable Development, and its 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), setting out a global agenda on poverty, health, gender equality, education and environmental sustainability. For the first time the SDGs also include a systematic focus on global labour rights and ‘decent work’. Goal Eight commits countries to the “promotion of sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all”. It remains unclear, however, what shape the implementation of Goal Eight will take and, in particular, how any improvements in workers’ rights may be measured. Fostering economic growth whilst safeguarding and improving labour rights continues to be a contentious policy challenge. It also poses important questions for NGOs and trade unions in Ireland and beyond. The conference will bring together trade unionists, academics and policy makers to discuss the implications of the UN’s sustainable development agenda for global labour rights. The symposium forms part of an ongoing research project between the Department of Sociology at Trinity College Dublin and the Irish Congress of Trade Unions funded under the Irish Research Council’s New Foundation scheme. It is supported by the Trinity International Development Initiative.

The Symposium will be opened by Jack O’Connor, Chair of the Irish Congress of Trade Unions’ European and International Forum. Speakers will include:

  • David Donoghue, Irish Ambassador to the United Nations in New York;
  • Catelene Passchier, Workers Spokesperson at ILO discussion on Decent Work in Global Supply Chains;
  • Aidan Madden, ARUP – Standards in the Bangladesh Fire and Safety Accord;
  • Bernadette Phelan, Membership Services Manager, Business in the Community Ireland

For further information on the project and symposium contact: Mairéad Finn (Research Officer and TIDI Coordinator, Trinity College Dublin) at To register please visit our Symposium Registration page

Date: Friday 11th November 2016 Time: 9:00 - 15:30

Venue: Synge Lecture Theatre, Arts Building, Trinity College


UNDP/EC Kapuscinski lecture in association with Trinity/UCD MSc in Development Practice: "Challenging Inequalities and Unsustainabilities: The Politics of Transformative Pathways"

Across the world, the rise of multiple forms of inequality, and growing environmental problems such as climate change and resource degradation, present defining challenges of our era. These challenges are interlinked, and affect people locally, nationally and globally with devastating consequences for wellbeing and security, and for the achievement of global development goals. Yet pathways to more equal and sustainable futures are possible. These involve innovative combinations of top-down and bottom-up strategies, and novel alliances between states, markets, technologies – and crucially, the knowledge and action of citizens themselves. As examples from urban and rural settings in Asia and Africa show, power and politics are critical in enabling such pathways to unfold, and shaping whether they add up to the transformational change needed to secure more equal, sustainable futures.  

Prof. Melissa Leach is Director of the Institute of Development Studies (IDS) at the University of Sussex. She founded and directed the ESRC STEPS (Social, Technological and Environmental Pathways to Sustainability) Centre ( from 2006 – 2014.

Date: Wednesday 2nd November 2016 Time: 16:00 - 17:30

Venue: Paccar Theatre, Science Gallery


TIME Keynote Address: Improving School Education Outcomes in Developing Countries: Evidence, Knowledge Gaps, and Policy Implications

Trinity IMpact Evaluation unit (TIME), Department of Economics, School of Social Sciences and Philosophy and the Trinity International Development Initiative are pleased to welcome Professor Paul Glewwe to Trinity College. 

“Improving School Education Outcomes in Developing Countries: Evidence, Knowledge Gaps, and Policy Implications”

Improvements in the standard of empirical research on identifying the causal impact of education policies on education outcomes have led to a significant increase in the body of evidence available on improving education outcomes in developing countries. In this address, Prof. Paul Glewwe synthesizes and interprets this evidence, and discusses why some interventions appear to be effective and others do not. Interpreting the evidence for generalizable lessons is challenging because of variation across contexts, duration and quality of studies, and the details of specific interventions studied. Nevertheless, some broad patterns do emerge. Demand-side interventions that increase the immediate returns to (or reduce household costs of ) school enrollment, or that increase students’ returns to effort, are broadly effective at increasing time in school and learning outcomes, but vary considerably in cost-effectiveness. Many expensive “standard” school inputs are often not very effective at improving outcomes, though some specific inputs (which are often less expensive) are. Interventions that focus on improved pedagogy (especially supplemental instruction to children lagging behind grade level competencies) are particularly effective, and so are interventions that improve school governance and teacher accountability. The broad policy message is that the evidence points to several promising ways in which the efficiency of education spending in developing countries can be improved by pivoting public expenditure from less cost-effective to more cost-effective ways of achieving the same objectives. 

Paul Glewwe is Professor of Applied Economics at the University of Minnesota and the current Director of the Center for International Food and Agricultural Policy. This keynote address will open Development Research Week, a week of development research activities at Trinity College. The address will be held in the Neill Lecture Theatre at the Long Room Hub and will be opened by Michael Gaffey, Director General of Irish Aid.

Date: Tuesday, 01 November 2016 Time: 18:30

Venue: Neill Lecture Theatre, Long Room Hub


Lecture: "Mobilising men and boys for gender justice: Lessons from South Africa's Sonke"

Using a range of short films and multi-media, the presentation will focus on Sonke's ambitious work over the last ten years to promote gender equality and human rights within Southern Africa and will describe the theories of change and multi-level strategies used by the organisation, including: legal advocacy and litigation, community education and mobilisation, mass and community media, coalition and network building, and action research.

Dean Peacock

Dean Peacock's work and activism over the last 25 years has focused on issues related to gender equality, gender-based violence, men and constructions of masculinities, HIV and AIDS, human rights, and social justice. He is also co-founder and co-chair of MenEngage, a global alliance with networks in over thirty countries across the world. In addition, he is an Ashoka Fellow and an Honorary Senior Lecturer at the University of Cape Town’s School of Public Health.

This talk is co-hosted by Irish Consortium on Gender Based Violence, Irish School of Ecumenics, Trinity Centre for Gender and Women's Studies, Trinity International Development Initiative and Trinity Long Room Hub.

Date: Monday, 17 October 2016 Time: 14:00 - 16:00

Venue: Trinity Long Room Hub, Trinity College


TIDI Seminar: The World Bank, Experimentation, and the African Development Agenda

TIDI is pleased to welcome Prof. Howard Stein, from the Dept. of Afroamerican and African Studies, University of Michigan, to Trinity College. Prof. Stein will give a seminar entitled “The World Bank, Experimentation, and the African Development Agenda.” In the past two decades, economists and political scientists engaged in development studies have widely adopted the use of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) in their research. These so-called 'randomistas' have proven to be a highly influential network, spreading their methods and approaches from academia to aid organizations and, increasingly, governments in the global south. This paper traces the adoption of RCTs within one of their most influential proponents: The World Bank. A study of the rise of RCTs inside this organization provides a lens not only to critically evaluate the methodology itself but to look inside the Bank to examine their research methodology, policy formation, operational culture and institutional dynamics.

Date: Monday 17th October 2016 Time: 11:00 - 12:00

Venue: Haughton Lecture Theatre, Museum Building, Trinity College