Faculty of Arts

Monash University

Postgraduate - Unit

This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2013 only. For students planning to study the unit, please refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course or area of study.

print version

6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

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FacultyFaculty of Arts
Organisational UnitSustainability Environment and Society
OfferedClayton Second semester 2013 (Day)
Coordinator(s)Dr Craig Thorburn


Previously coded IDA4320


This subject deconstructs the concepts of 'development', 'progress' and 'underdevelopment' before embarking on a historical examination of how various theories have been translated into policy and action. It then looks chronologically at the rise and demise of various doctrines and approaches, focusing on the role of international development aid and trade. It engages the core question of 'What can reasonably be said about the causes of changes in a country or a region's 'level of development'?' Through case studies, it underscores the particularity of individual countries' experiences, while attempting to draw out what are the basic principles that can be compared across time and space.


  1. Understanding of basic historical and theoretical contexts of notions of 'development', both as a focus of social science and government practice
  2. Understanding of how the literature has approached the analysis of international development policy and practice
  3. Through examination of country experiences, a sense of how to put these into particular context, and to examine critically their applicability to analysing and assessing development policies and practice as they have varied over time and between countries; also, the extent to which development policy and practice has been driven by 'ideas' rather than indigenous political and social realities.


Annotated bibliography/country report (2000 words): 67%
Reading diary (800 words): 23%
Seminar presentation/facilitation: 10%

Chief examiner(s)

Contact hours

One 1-hour lecture and one 2-hour tutorial/seminar per week, offered contiguously.