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Many developing countries have limited success in achieving higher economic growth and poverty reduction due to many factors, of which the most important is insufficient emphasis on the historical, current and emerging patterns of development and related issues. The emerging imperatives of change in social, economic and political spheres clearly point towards a pressing need for developing greater theoretical and practical understanding of the existing and future trends in policy, practice and academic spheres of the various arenas of development, especially in countries like Pakistan which aspire to catch up with the more developed countries.

Development Studies strives to create this understanding. As a discipline it is not very old. The term came into use only after the Second World War because there was need to understand the socio-economic and political changes taking place in the newly independent countries. It is a multi-disciplinary field of study that seeks to understand social, economic, political, technological and cultural aspects of societal change in developing countries from an academic and practical standpoint. Emphasis is placed on the study of societies, economies and institutions of the developing countries, their inter-connectedness with the developed world and the processes through which international institutions and mechanisms impact upon the overall goals of development within a global context. It is a changing and evolving field of study, covering topics like

  • Reasons for poverty and strategies for its reduction
  • Equitable incomes and justice
  • Environmental issues related to the process of development
  • Trade in the context of Globalization Agriculture and industry in developing countries
  • Climate change and Disaster management
  • Civil society and development
  • Impact of international development institutions on developing countries
  • Gender issues