Théories du développement

Théories du développement

After this course, the student must be able to locate the different development theories from 1945 till nowadays and to understand relationships between theories and the economic, social and po-litical context based on an historical analysis.

Centre Interdisciplinaire de Recherche Travail, État et Société (CIRTES), Université catholique de Louvain, Belgium

This course aims to stress the specificities of de-velopment thought as an interdisciplinary scientific field linked to the key issues in the contemporary world. The course also aims to underline issues at stake in the field of develop-ment thought, both in the North and in the South, in a context of the crisis of the major devel-opment paradigms which have been dominant in the second part of the XXth century.

The course is divided in two parts. In the first part, the following themes will be discussed:

  • The dogmatic paradigm of modernisation
  • The dependency paradigm : historical roots and economic, social and political conceptions
  • Emergence of a critical thought in search of “another development”
  • Reshaping the links between Market and State in development strategies: main elements of new political eco-nomics
  • From the doctrine of the structural adjustment to the doctrine of neo-modernisation
  • Neo-structuralism, Economics of regulations and conventions in the development debate
  • From Sen to the concept of human development
  • New trends of the critical analysis in development thought

In the second part, we will analyse the roots of the concepts related to organizations which differ both from for profit enter-prises and from public organizations such as Third sector, NGOs, Non profit organizations, social economy and so forth. This analysis is developed in a North-South framework.

Content and teaching methods

The aim of this course is to give to the students grids of analysis in order to better grasp the evo-lution of development theories stressing relationships between theories and the economic, social and political context. The lectures will develop these main grids of analysis. Compulsory individual readings will be asked to the students linked to themes developed during the lectures.


Andreia Lemaître, Marthe Nyssens

For more information about this course, click here.

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