Institute of Development Studies

The Institute of Development Studies (IDS) is a leading global charity for international development research, teaching and communications.

Our vision is a world in which poverty does not exist, social justice prevails and economic growth is focused on improving human wellbeing. We believe that research knowledge can drive the change that must happen in order for this vision to be realised.

Founded in 1966, IDS enjoys an international reputation based on the quality of our work and our commitment to applying academic skills to real-world challenges. Our theory of change is at the heart of what we do. We think that knowledge should be generated by sound methodology and in partnership with other development and non-development actors.

IDS hosts five dynamic research teams, several popular postgraduate courses, and a family of world-class knowledge services. These three spheres are integrated in a unique combination – as a development knowledge hub, IDS is connected into, and is a convenor of, networks throughout the world.

The Institute is home to approximately 100 researchers, 40 knowledge services staff, 65 professional staff and about 200 students at any one time. But the IDS community extends far beyond, encompassing an extensive network of over 250 partners, over 2000 alumni and hundreds of former staff across the development community worldwide.

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Former Brazilian president Lula da Silva’s development aid programme has fizzled out. Reuters/Ueslei Marcelino

How Brazil missed its golden South-South co-operation moment

Lula led an unprecedented shift in the country’s foreign policy towards the global South. He also helped elevate Brazil to the status of a global player. But, six years on, disillusionment reigns.
Tax justice campaigns can be effective, if they’re aimed at the right targets. David Parry/PA

Tax justice campaigners should stop picking on the OECD

Have the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development and the G20 really attempted to “discredit and discourage” the participation of developing countries in a new system of automatic tax information…
Afghanistan’s Hazara minority has a huge stake in the future of democracy. EPA/Jawad Jalali

Afghanistan’s Hazara minority flexes its political muscles

Given that no census has been conducted in Afghanistan since 1979, it’s unclear whether the Hazara ethnic minority constitute 9% or near 20% of the country’s population. What is clear, however, is that…
Just make sure you get a receipt. Tom Miller/PA

India’s firm stance on tax could actually help investors

India keeps getting into arguments with foreign firms over tax; is it wise to do so? The Financial Times, for one, is in no doubt that India is scaring off foreign investors, and that it is making a mistake…
Study showed 87% of Afghan women have suffered some form of violence. Senior Airman Ashley Avecilla

Women threatened by changes to the Afghan legal system

A revised Criminal Procedure Code currently sits on the desk of Hamid Karzai. It has already passed through both the lower and upper houses of the Afghan parliament. If President Karzai signs it into law…
Private sector-led growth might help. DFID - UK Department for International Development

UK is not thinking smart about growth in developing countries

Justine Greening, the international development secretary, recently made a speech on how business can contribute to development. Three quarters of it was about the importance of economic growth in developing…
Murder in the mall: when terror came to Nairobi’s upper middle class. EPA/Kabir Dhanji

Inconvenient truths for Kenya after Westgate attack

The shooting death of an Islamic cleric in Mombasa and the unrest that followed over the weekend as young Muslims torched…

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