DARG Sponsored Sessions at the RGS-IBG Annual Conference

Developing Areas Research group (DARG) Call for Sponsored Sessions, RGS-IBG Annual International Conference, London

DARG invites proposals for sponsored sessions at the upcoming 2019 RGS-IBG Annual International Conference, to be held in Wednesday 28th to Friday 30th August. This year we will be launching a paper prize, offered for the best paper presented during a DARG sponsored panel.

The 2019 Conference Chair is Professor Hester Parr (University of Glasgow, UK) and the conference theme is Geographies of trouble / Geographies of hope. We invite proposals for sessions that engage with the conference themes and extend contemporary debates within Development Geography. These can be pitched as paper panels, roundtables and sessions that include Development practitioners.

Please contact DARG Chair Dr Jessica Hope with any questions about proposal for a sponsored session (Jessica.hope@bristol.ac.uk). The deadline for proposals is Friday 21st December 2018. These should include:

1. Title of session

2. Name of co-sponsoring groups (if applicable)

3. Name, affiliation, and contact details for session convenors

4. Session abstract (max 300 words, excl. references)

5. Indication of any non-standard arrangements.

We will notify you about your proposal by January 4th. The deadline for full session details to be sent by conveners to DARG (including sequence of papers, paper titles, abstracts and full author details) is 11th February 2019.

For more information on DARG see: http://www.darg.rgs.org For more information on the conference see: https://www.rgs.org/research/annual-international-conference/

Full call for sessions can be found here: https://www.rgs.org/research/annual-international-conference/programme-(1)/

DARG Undergraduate Dissertation Prize Winner

We are delighted to announce the winner of this years Undergraduate Dissertation Prize; Miles Harrison from UCL for dissertation titled ‘Empowering the poor?: The effects of formalising informal settlements in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania’. Many congratulations Miles!

The DARG committee were impressed with the amount of data Miles collected through his reflective, mixed methods approach using interviews and questionnaires. Miles’ analysis and findings are presented clearly and he makes important contributions to work on housing tenure in Dar es Salaam.

We would also like to highly commend two runners up who also wrote excellent dissertations. They are:

– Charles White (Durham), dissertation titled: An investigation of the hydropolitics of conflict and modernity: a case study of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam
– Katharine Gardiner (Oxford), dissertation titled: A Nascent Nation: the stateless Dominicans of Haitian descent and their constructions of nationality.

 

We received many fantastic dissertations so we would like to acknowledge all of the hard work and enthusiasm from all the students whose dissertations were submitted.

 

The Developing Areas Research Group in conjunction with Routledge offers an annual prize for the most promising dissertation concerning ‘The Geography of Developing Areas’. The author of the winning dissertation receives £100 worth of Routledge books of their choice, and 20% discount on any further Routledge books ordered.

 

The prize is open to any student taking a first degree in Geography. Students taking joint degrees are eligible to enter for the prize, provided that at least half their course is in Geography. It is suggested that no Department of Geography submits more than one dissertation for this prize. Dissertations will be evaluated by three members of the DARG Committee.

DARG Postgraduate Travel Prize Winner

We are delighted to announce the winner of our DARG postgraduate travel prize, Kavita Dattani who is an MRes student at Queen Mary, University of London. We received a very strong set of applications so congratulations Kavita!

Kavita’s research project is entitled “Digitising Domestic Work: investigating the role of digital technologies and on-demand platforms in the work-lives of Delhi’s domestic workers“. The prize is £800 toward fieldwork costs and Kavita will be spending the summer in Delhi where she will conduct interviews and focus groups. We wish Kavita the best of luck with her research and are looking forward to her report on her return.

If you are interested in applying for future funding, our travel prize closes on 1 June every year. More information can be found on our funding page. We look forward to receiving your submissions.

David W. Smith Essay Prize Winner 2018

The Developing Areas Research Group of the Royal Geographical Society (with the Institute of British Geographers) annual essay competition is in memory of David W. Smith. David W Smith, who also published under the name of David Drakakis Smith, was an outstanding scholar committed to researching on Third World cities. He died in 1999.

 

The competition is open to A2 level students in England and Wales and Advanced Higher students in Scotland who are invited to write an essay of up to 1500 words to a title chosen by DARG. This year’s essay title was:

With reference to one city in the Global South and one key theme (gender, health or sexuality) answer the following question: To what extent (& in what ways) does the city ensure the safety of its citizens?

 

We at DARG are delighted to announce the winner of the David W. Smith Memorial Prize 2018, Antonia Hogan from St. Mary’s School, Ascot.  Antonia wrote a wonderful essay to the title; With reference to Cairo, Egypt and Gender: To what extent (& in what ways) does the city ensure the safety of its citizens? She wins £100 in book vouchers from Routledge Publishers.

 

 

 

Many thanks to all who submitted an essay. We hope you will continue with your work on development geography and your engagement with the important issues of gender, health and sexuality.

 

The 2019 competition will be announced in Autumn this year so please keep an eye out for details.

 

DARG Sponsored Sessions at the RGS-IBG Annual Conference

We are currently sponsoring four sessions for the RGS-IBG Annual Conference 2018. Please see information below and do consider submitting an abstract to one of them.

 

Sustainable Landscapes: how is the sustainable development agenda (re)working and (re)producing landscapes?

 

Jessica Hope

Vice-Chancellor’s Fellow, Department of Geography, University of Bristol

Jessica.hope@bristol.ac.uk

 

This DARG sponsored panel interrogates reiterations of sustainable development, as it becomes a guiding principle for global development following the 2015 launch of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). This is in response to increasing recognition of human-induced climate change, and despite the concept being much critiqued as a buzzword “unavoidable, powerful and floating free from concrete referents in a world of make-me-believe” (Adams 2009). In this panel, we will debate the contemporary landscapes being changed and (re)produced by the sustainable development agenda, as well as the extent of its power in relation to wider shifts in development (Mawdsley 2016, 2017). Firstly, we will question what kinds of landscapes are being created and how – for example, through discourse and transformative imaginaries (Foucault 2002; Cosgrove 2008), assemblages, networks and actors (Braun 2006; DeLanda 2006), its methods for data collection and measurement (Jerven 2013), and the ways it encounters and values the non-human (Lorimer 2012; Sundberg 2014). Secondly, we will identify, examine and assess the practices that constitute emergent and dominant forms of sustainable development and thirdly, consider the knowledges, natures, debates and conflicts that are being overlooked or actively excluded.

 

Please send a 300 word abstract to Dr Jessica Hope by Wednesday February 14th along with a brief biography.

 

Adams, W.M., 2009. Green Development: environment and sustainability in the Third World. Routledge.

Braun, B., 2006. Towards a new earth and a new humanity: nature, ontology, politics (pp. 191-222). Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Cosgrove, D., 2008. Geography and Vision: Seeing. Imagining and Representing the World (IB Tauris, London).

DeLanda, M., 2006. A new philosophy of society: Assemblage theory and social complexity. A&C Black.

Foucault, M., 2002. The order of things: An archaeology of the human sciences. Psychology Press.

Jerven, M., 2013. Poor numbers: how we are misled by African development statistics and what to do about it. Cornell University Press.

Lorimer, J., 2012. Multinatural geographies for the Anthropocene. Progress in Human Geography36(5), pp.593-612.

Mawdsley, E., 2017. Development geography 1: Cooperation, competition and convergence between ‘North’and ‘South’. Progress in Human Geography41(1), pp.108-117.

—-2016. Development geography II: Financialization. Progress in Human Geography, p.0309132516678747.

Sundberg, J., 2014. Decolonizing posthumanist geographies. cultural geographies21(1), pp.33-47.

 

 

Peripheral urbanisms: Exploring the significance of urban change and continuity across comparative peripheries

 

Dr Paula Meth & Prof Alison Todes

Reader & Director of Undergraduate Programme
Department of Urban Studies and Planning, University of Sheffield

p.j.meth@sheffield.ac.uk

 

This panel focuses on the spatial edges of large cities and city-regions across the world, with a particular, but not exclusive focus on cities in the global South. These edges present a complex mix of poorly understood, and often unresearched, urban transformations. Urban changes often signal new forms of investment, either by private sector interests, or in relation to geographically particular state-directed investment in infrastructure (including housing) or employment creation – sometimes part of national policy measures. Pressures on housing markets in other parts of a city can also have spill-over impacts on different peripheral locations. Lower land costs, particular forms of tenure and regulation may also underpin growth in these areas.  At the same time, parts of urban peripheries are subject to absences of investment, or declines in earlier interventions, tied to global shifts of capital or the repositioning of priorities, which may result in depopulation, loss of working age residents or rising poverty. These undulations have significant impacts on the everyday lives of local residents, affecting employment opportunities, and accessiblity to services, education and health, with some areas languishing while others evolve slowly under the steam of piecemeal local responses. Importantly, the nature of local, city and national governance structures shapes these changes and continuities, hence weakness or conflicting governance demands impact on these peripheral urbanisms resulting in poorly managed outcomes or the cherry-picking of particular localities over others. Urban peripheries are themselves varied, as land availability and ownership, environmental quality, transport links etc all work to differentiate urban living and urban change, with wealth and poverty evident.

 

Our panel aims to attract researchers (and other urban colleagues) who are interested in questions relating to particular or comparative urban peripheries. The panel will include papers from our African Peripheries project (see https://www.wits.ac.za/urbanperiphery/) but welcomes papers which draw on empirically-grounded material relating to other urban contexts. The panel welcomes papers focusing on spatial practices, political and governance trends and interventions, economic processes and social realities among other issues and reflects on the significance of these for urban theory. Papers which examine methodological or conceptual challenges of researching ‘Peripheral urbanisms’ are also welcome.

 

 

 

 

Interrogating relationships between spatial and social mobility in the Global South

 

Marta Bivand Erdal

Research Professor

 Peace Research Institute Oslo (PRIO)

 

www.prio.org/staff/marta

www.prio.org/migration

 

 

This session seeks to interrogate the variegated relationships between spatial mobility and social mobility in societies in the Global South. Relationships between migration and development have received substantial attention in recent years, notably foregrounding the salience of remittances at the household level (Carling 2008; Clemens and Ogden 2014; de Haas 2006). Scrutinizing the ways in which migration interacts with development processes, one conclusion appears to be that migration is an integral component to social change, whereas its exact functions and dynamics are highly context-dependent (de Haas 2010; Sana and Massey 2005; Skeldon 2014). Meanwhile, there also appears to be some potential for moving the understanding of relationships between spatial mobility and social mobility further, especially by juxtaposing analyses built on the specifics of particular contexts, and through constructive dialogue between different strands of scholarship.

 

This session’s engagement with relationships between spatial mobility and social mobility in the Global South, draws on scholarship at the intersections of geography, development and migration studies (de Haan 1999; Gibson et al 2010; Rigg 2007). Hence building on work which has explored the roles that migration plays in livelihood pathways for individuals and families (Myroniuk and Vearey 2014; Rigg et al 2014; Rigg 2007), some of which foregrounds the roles of education, intertwined with migration, for social mobility (Boyden 2013; Smith et al 2014). It also draws inspiration from the field of youth studies, especially in African contexts, where the interplay of spatial and social mobility emerges as crucial (Gough 2008; Langevang and Gough 2009).

 

In Africa, much as in Asian societies, urbanization is perhaps the most crucial process whereby spatial mobility and outcomes regarding quality of life and future prospects interact, making cities a crucial avenue for research (Gough et al 2015). Interrelated with urbanization, the rise of ‘new middle classes’ in African and Asian contexts, is receiving attention, where spatial mobility also matters (Page and Sunjo 2017). The multi-locality of livelihoods themselves is a further dimension of relationships between spatial mobility and social mobility, which merits attention (Thieme 2008; Schroder and Stephan-Emmich 2016); and associated with this, sustained transnational ties which migration might lead to, among other involving a potential insurance mechanism through remittances, as protection to various shocks (Mazzucato 2009).

 

For the purposes of this session, spatial mobility is understood to include rural-to-urban migration, internal and international migration, whether regionally or further afield. Social mobility, in turn, is understood in contextual, emic terms, as improvement, in terms of quality of life, the realization or promise of prospects for life, including but not limited to securing material wealth. Different units of analysis are of relevance, including individuals and families, notably with a lens sensitive to gendered dimensions, but also neighborhoods, communities, or cities. With appropriate data available, national level analyses, distinguishing between differing types of spatial mobility, and their connections with various economic outcomes, are important in order to better understand patterns at an aggregate level.

 

Papers addressing the challenge of ‘interrogating relationships between spatial mobility and social mobility in the Global South’, submitted for this session, might focus on – but need not be limited to – e.g.:

  • exploring the roles (and non-roles) which migration – past, and present – plays in the emergence of ‘new middle classes’ in Asia and Africa
  • exploring how education plays a role in quests for social mobility, where spatial mobility might also come into play
  • comparative analyses of the interplay of spatial mobility and social mobility, between several contexts
  • longitudinal intergenerational analyses of the interplay of spatial and social mobility in extended families (and/or households) over time

 

 

Beyond the standardised urban lexicon: Which Vocabulary Matters?

This panel is jointly sponsored by Royal Geographical Society’s (with the Institute of British Geographers) Developing Areas Research Group (DARC) and Postgraduate Forum (RGSPGF) Session Conveners: Shreyashi Dasgupta and Noura Wahby, University of Cambridge, UK

Session Abstract: The framing of the urban lexicon has been standardised and dominated based on the Euro American context. However, contemporary urban theories from Global Cities, World Class Cities, to Ordinary Cities, Comparative Urbanism and Southern Urbanism have indicated the shift in understanding the ‘urban’ and ‘cities’ from various perspectives. The urban vocabulary is continuously growing in an attempt to capture the complex power dynamics, changing geographical landscapes as well as urban processes. How we read cities and where we place them in a global lexicon is increasingly contested especially around basic questions, such as the meaning of ‘the urban’, boundaries of country and city, among others (Parnell 2014). In particular, the nature of the inclusion of experiences from the Global South is under great scrutiny and debate. These conceptualisations have resulted in an expansion of Southern vocabulary that is continually transformed as new ground realities emerge. Debates surrounding the use of the word ‘slum’, ‘smart cities’, ‘urban poor’, ‘legal’, ‘illegal’, ‘formal’, ‘informal’, ‘periphery’ and so on are especially indicative of the power idiosyncrasies inherent in the choice of vocabulary, where adoption of different types of definitions lead to discriminatory government policies, cosmetic donor programs and complex community identities.

It is thus important to trace how Northern-based theory and concepts are applied in spaces such as the Global South, or across new geographies of national spaces elsewhere. Similarly, we aim to bring to light in-depth analyses on the adoption of new lexicons, the dominance of certain voices, the capture of terminologies by powerful stakeholders, and the recycling of words from the ground-up or vice versa. This panel aims to bring together conceptualisation and interventions that bridge the divide between theory and practice to understand produced mismatches in applying standard urban terms to ground realities.

 

Bibliography

Bhan, G (2016). ‘In the Public’s Interest: Evictions, Citizenship and Inequality in Contemporary Delhi’. University of Georgia Press.

Parnell, S and Oldfield, S (2014). ‘The Routledge Handbook on Cities of the Global South’. Routledge: New York. RGS-IBG 2018 Annual International Conference Page 2

Simone, A. (2017). ‘Living as logistics: Tenuous struggles in the remaking of collective’ in ‘The Routledge Companion to Planning in the Global South. Routledge: New York.

Schindler, S (2017). ‘Towards a paradigm of Southern Urbanism’. City. 21 (1) 47-64

Watson, V (2009). ‘Seeing from the South: Refocusing Urban Planning on the Globe’s Central Urban Issues’. Urban Studies. 46 (11) 2259 to 2275.

 

If you would like to participate in the session please submit an abstract (maximum 300 words) along with the name and affiliation to Shreyashi Dasgupta (sd681@cam.ac.uk) and Noura Wahby (nw352@cam.ac.uk) by Thursday 8th February 2018. The length of session will be of 1 hour and 40 minutes. It will be comprised of 5 papers that will be of 15 minutes each. A discussion of 25 minutes will follow as well as closing remarks by the session chair. We would also like to encourage scholars to explore different mediums of presentation, such as photo essays, short videos, among others.

RGS-IBG 2018: Call for DARG (Developing Areas Research Group) Session Proposals

RGS-IBG 2018: Call for DARG (Developing Areas Research Group) Session Proposals

The Developing Areas Research Group (DARG) would like to invite expressions of interest and proposals for sponsored sessions for the RGS-IBG Annual International Conference to be held in Cardiff, Tuesday 28th August – Friday 31st August, 2018.
DARG welcomes proposals that address both theoretical and empirical questions, changes and conflicts with regards to geographies of development, as well as those that engage directly with Professor Paul Milbourne’s the theme of Geographical landscapes /  changing landscapes of geography. See www.rgs.org/ac2018 for further details.
Each session length is 1 hour and 40mins and in addition to paper-based sessions we also encourage innovation formats to sessions, see here.
Please send a 300 word proposal to DARG Chair – Jessica Hope (jessicachloehope@gmail.com) by Monday Jan 15th 2018.

Undergraduate Workshop: Fieldwork for international development dissertations

The Developing Areas Research Group (DARG Royal Geographical Society-IBG) is absolutely delighted to announce that they will host their annual Undergraduate dissertation workshop for students interested in doing fieldwork in the Global South. You will hear from world leading researchers, including Prof David Hulme (Global Development Institute, University of Manchester), Dr. Kate McLean (Geography, Birkbeck, University of London), Dr. Rubina Jasani (Humanitarian and Conflict Response Institute, University of Manchester) and Dr Jennifer O’Brien (Manchester University) who have carried out extensive work in different and challenging environments in ‘development’ contexts. They will share their personal accounts of the difficulties of research in such contexts, as well as their ‘top tips’.
The event will also give you opportunity to find out about the ‘nitty gritty’ related to the logistics of preparing for the ‘field’. And there will be mini workshops focusing on key issues: ‘Mental health in the field’; ‘Ethics in development research’; and ‘Translation’. These workshops will also be led by researchers, working in the ‘global south’. The workshop is aimed at second year students planning to do their dissertation research in a development context.
This is an event not to be missed as it will give you the opportunity to think through your own dissertation topic and how you may go about gathering data.

 

 The event will take place at Manchester University, University place, Room 4.204 on the 31st January 2018

 

The eventbrite page can be found here
Places are limited! There is a £10 registration fee which is payable on arrival. The event starts at 10am and ends at 5pm.
To register, or for further information please email: Dr. Raksha Pande at raksha.pande@newcastle.ac.uk

Postgraduate Workshop Resources

 

In November 2017 DARG ran a postgraduate workshop focusing on developing a communications and impact strategy for your work. For those who were unable to attend we have included some useful resources below and a communication and impact plan template available to use here.

 

 

Useful resources

  • INASP does a lot of work with development policy-makers and can provide useful advice on Policy Influence Plans. In addition, they have some great resources for those working in developing countries, and information about communicating research with academics and practitioners in other countries. (Follow them on Twitter: @INASPinfo)

 

  • Research to Action has a huge number of resources on making sure your research is accessible and used by development practitioners and policymakers. Specifically, there are loads of useful guides and templates available here. (Follow them on Twitter: @Research2Action)

 

  • Communications & Impact strategy guides: In addition to our basic template, ESRC has a useful guide here, and a list of alternatives can be found here.

 

  • If you’re interested in creative methods of communication, check out PositiveNegatives, which produces some fantastic comics and animations on humanitarian and development issues. (Follow them on Twitter: @PosNegOrg) If you think a creative medium could be a great way to share your work/research “story” with particular groups, why not check out the Arts-based courses taught at your university – producing a film, animation, comic, podcast etc. linked to your research could be a great project for an undergraduate or Masters-level student, either as part of their course or to develop their portfolio…

 

 

  • Remember to check out courses offered by your institution. Most have training or resources on publishing, working with the media, using social media as an academic etc. And if they don’t, make a request for them to start offering such support! It’s also worth making sure you are always letting someone from your university or research centre know if you are trying to promote a publication/blog post/presentation etc. so they can help you to share it widely and offer you communications support.

 

  • Lastly, if you are thinking of trying out Twitter as an academic, start off by ‘following’ some DARG-related profiles:
    – DARG: @DARG_RGS
    – RGS Postgraduate Forum: @PGF_RGSIBG
    – RGS Postgrad Forum for Masters students: @PGFmasters
    – RGS Higher Education: @RGS_IBGhe
    – Prof Dorothea Kleine: @dorotheakleine
    – Gemma Pearson: @GemKPea
    – Hannah Smith: @hannahesmith_13
    … and check out who they follow.

David W. Smith Memorial Essay Prize

The Developing Areas Research Group of the Royal Geographical Society (with the Institute of British Geographers) runs an annual essay competition in memory of David W. Smith. Our prize is £100 cheque from Routledge Publishers.

 

A2 level students in England and Wales and Advanced Higher students in Scotland are invited to write an essay of up to 1,500 words on the following title:

With reference to one city in the Global South and one key theme (gender, health or sexuality) answer the following question: 

To what extent (& in what ways) does the city ensure the safety of its citizens?

 

  • Essays should be word processed, 1.5 spaced.
  • The word count does not include the reference list.

 

Essays must be received by Friday 16 March 2018. Please include your name, school and contact details with your essay. Your teacher must confirm that the essay is your own work.

 

If you would like to acknowledge receipt of your essay please indicate this in your submission email.

 

Submit an electronic copy to the email address below:

Dr Jessica Hope jessicachloehope@gmail.com

DARG PGR Workshop- 14th November

PGR Workshop: Developing a communications and impact strategy for your research

 

Organisers: Developing Areas Research Group (DARG), Royal Geographical Society
Date and time: Tuesday 14th November 2017, 12-4pm
Location: Meeting room 1, The Octagon Centre, Sheffield, S10 2TQ

 

Workshop description: This workshop will guide postgraduate researchers to develop a communications and impact strategy for their research. The focus will be on varied and innovative ways of communicating research with audiences and stakeholders outside of academia. The workshop will include case studies and examples from external speakers, followed by group discussion and time to draft your own strategy and seek feedback from your peers.

Target audience: The workshop is open to all postgraduate researchers, but is primarily designed for Masters and PhD students from Geography (Physical and Human), International Development and Social Science backgrounds.

 

Tickets: £5, available here

For more information, please contact Hannah Smith at smithh39@coventry.ac.uk