Kapuscinski lecture: The human problem at the heart of development
The field of international development studies must evolve to stay on top of the many changes affecting the world of today. This Kapuscinski lecture and fourth lecture in the series about the future of international development will be given by Jonathan Jansen, rector of the University of the Free State and President of the South African Institute of Race Relations. From Ferguson and France to the Free State - what is the human problem at the heart of development?
There remains a unshakeable assumption in the international policy community that development in one country can be switched on and off from central controls elsewhere in the global system. You see this logic with everything from Education for All to the MDGs.
Furthermore, the kinds of issues that wreak havoc on societies and their systems of education are largely ignored in international policy scripts that privilege academic achievement in science, mathematics and literacy. This technicist and instrumentalist view of education has exposed developmental agendas to even greater threats: the unravelling of human relations that are so crucial to both people and performance across the world.
In this lecture, Jonathan Jansen makes these arguments real by presenting his research on race, intimacy and leadership at the University of the Free State in South Africa, to demonstrate how creating conditions for human togetherness enables the achievement of broader developmental goals. He will then shift the analysis to the dangerous race relations in Ferguson (USA) and the Paris of Charlie Hebdo where the crises of human relations sparked the rage of a few. In short, he will argue that any analysis that begins and ends with condemnation, rather than pressing for an understanding of the underlying dilemmas of inequality, poverty, segregation and violence cannot resolve complex ‘developmental’ challenges such as those outlined above.
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