The difficult relationship between democracy and development in Indonesia: A book review

By Gerry Rodgers

Jean-Luc Maurer’s book “Indonésie : l’envol mouvementé du Garuda. Développement, dictature et démocratie” is a comprehensive political history of Indonesia, encompassing geography, demography, society and economy, from pre-colonial times to the present day.

The book aims to fill a gap in the writings about Indonesia in French. But that should not deter an English-speaking audience from dipping into it, because there is much to be learned here, not only about Indonesia, but also about the lessons of Indonesia’s experience for democracy and development elsewhere. Continue reading “The difficult relationship between democracy and development in Indonesia: A book review”

How social accountability initiatives are helping pursue social justice

By Elsbet Lodenstein and Sylvia I. Bergh | EADI/ISS Blog Series

 Achieving social justice in service delivery in the health, social welfare, and humanitarian sectors is still a formidable challenge in most developing countries. Poor and marginalised people generally lack the voice to make their demands heard and the awareness to claim their rights. However, social accountability initiatives have become a promising way to address these issues. Continue reading “How social accountability initiatives are helping pursue social justice”

Sand and gravel: Rethinking aggregate consumption and distribution

By Arpita Bisht

Of all natural resources, mineral aggregates (sand and gravel) have been the fastest growing and most extracted material group over the 21st century. This growth has not only been associated with large-scale ecological degradation, but also with violent extractive operations on local levels.

Given that sand and gravel are heavily used in the construction industry, particularly in concrete production, it comes as no surprise that the growth of infrastructure is the main driver for the overall rise in their consumption. What’s more, since 1970, increasing aggregate consumption has largely been observed in the global South—in regions which have witnessed massive economic and infrastructure growth. Continue reading “Sand and gravel: Rethinking aggregate consumption and distribution”

Development researchers as advocates: eight tips for more engaged scholarship

By Adinda Ceelen | EADI/ISS Blog Series

Research impact has become a strategic priority for many research institutes around the world, with an increasing focus on “bridging the gap” between research and society and positioning research in a way that ensures the knowledge it produces can contribute to bringing about change. Development researchers often find themselves straddling two worlds: the academic sector on the one hand, and the development sector on the other. But is there a moral imperative for development researchers to bridge these two realms by acting as advocates in ‘the real world’? If so, how can they best share knowledge in ways that contribute to solidarity, peace, and social justice? Continue reading “Development researchers as advocates: eight tips for more engaged scholarship”

Risk dumping in field research: some researchers are safer than others

By Linda Johnson and Rodrigo Mena | EADI/ISS Blog Series

A quick glance at who is out collecting data in ‘the field’, including in remote and sometimes hazardous environments, is enough to make our point clear: the main executors of in-situ research (also known as fieldwork research) are local researchers and research assistants, sometimes together with junior or PhD researchers from research institutions in the Global North. These groups are being systematically and disproportionately exposed to safety and security issues linked to field research. Continue reading “Risk dumping in field research: some researchers are safer than others”