Skip to main content
KBS_Icon_questionmark link-ico


We have a different agenda to traditional development studies in the UK and wider afield. In keeping with our origins as a King’s Global Institute, our department specifically focuses on middle-income developing countries and ‘emerging economies’ – the fast growing economies where foreign aid is largely irrelevant. 

Our research seeks to explore critical perspectives on economic growth, modernisation and ‘progress’. We aim to do so by exploring context-specific economic, social and political change in these countries rather than applying prescriptive models of development.

We pursue this through consideration of two key poles of development: 

  1. inclusive development: the policies, politics and economics of ensuring the broad population share in the benefits of growth and wealth
  2. national development: the policies, politics and economics of promoting and sustaining economic development within a global context. 

Our research expertise spans political science, sociology, social anthropology, development economics, history, geography and management. Meanwhile, our work has received financial support from the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC), Medical Research Council (MRC), Department for International Development (DfID), Wellcome Trust, Leverhulme Trust, and British Academy, amongst others.nWe also have strong regional expertise and collaborations in China, India, Latin America and Southeast Asia.

Our staff and international collaborators focus around a set of research groups. These groups contribute to an understanding of how societies move towards more inclusive modes of economic, social and political development, and what holds this back.

Our research

Research and expertise

Research and expertise

What makes our agenda different to traditional development studies in the UK and wider afield?

Research impact

Research impact

Our research informs policies and practices for governments and global development organisations.

Our people

Our people

Find a member of staff at the Department of International Development.

News and events from the Department of International Development

27 Feb

Living a feminist life

27 February 2020

Join Sara Ahmed as she discusses her book, 'Living a feminist life'