Rising Powers in International Development Programme

Poverty reduction in low-income countries is increasingly influenced by the rising powers, a category that includes the BRICS grouping of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, as well as regional powers such as Mexico and Indonesia. Their importance is likely to grow still further as the financial crisis and longer-term global economic and political shifts reduce the relative weight of established donor countries such as the UK.

Chinese and African workers on the construction site of a station and railway which is part of a devlopment aid project by China in Angola in exchange for petroleum.Credit: Dieter Telemans / Panos.

The Rising Powers in International Development programme, led by IDS Fellow Jing Gu, is developing an evidence-base around the role of these countries in development and producing practical policy guidance on effective approaches for engaging with them.

There will be a particular focus on exploring these countries' contribution to global public goods, starting with a study of key sectors, such as energy, where the global public good is climate change mitigation, and examine the political and institutional drivers and barriers for action.

The programme draws on IDS' strong existing networks in rising power countries, in the research community, civil society and government, building on the work of the BRICS Initiative (est 2011), a hub of research, learning and knowledge sharing on the role of the BRICS countries in international development cooperation.

You can also sign up for our regular email updates - contact Louise Oakley.

Photo of Alex Shankland, IDS Research Fellow More details

Photo of Alex Shankland, IDS Research Fellow More details

IDS staff or research student More details

Photo of Anuradha Joshi, IDS researcher More details

Photo of Deepta Chopra, IDS Governance and Gender / Sexuality Research Fellow More details

Photo of Deepta Chopra, IDS Governance and Gender / Sexuality Research Fellow More details

Photo of Gerry Bloom, Research Fellow of the Knowledge Technology and Society team More details

Photo of Hayley MacGregor More details

Photo of Hubert Schmitz from Green Transformations Cluster More details

Photo of Jennifer Constantine More details

Photo of Jeremy Allouche, IDS research fellow More details

Photo of Jing Gu More details

Photo of Lizbeth Navas-Aleman More details

Photo of Louise Oakley More details

Photo of Mustafa Roberts, IDS More details

Rômulo Paes de Sousa, Director of the World Centre for Sustainable Development, the Rio+ Centre and Senior International Associate with the IDS Rising Powers in International Development programme More details

Photo of Rosalind Eyben More details

IDS staff or research student More details

Professor Xuilan Zhang, Senior International Associate with the Rising Powers in International Development programme and Director, Institute of Social Development and Public Policy, Beijing Normal University. More details

Advisory Council and Network Development

The RPID Programme aims to provide high-level guidance on key debates in international development policy and on how IDS and its partner organisations can best influence these debates through research and other activittes. More details

BRICS Economic Engagement Footprint Study

This project investigated the nature of economic relations between the BRICS and Africa, in order to quantify the development footprint, focusing on various elements such as trade, investment. finance, ODA and migration. The current phase aims to look at development finance and the role of BRICS development banks. More details

Russia and International Development Cooperation

Following the collapse of the Soviet Union, Russia was redefined as an aid recipient, but in 2007, it officially signalled its intention to reverse this role. The Rising Powers in International Development Programme is looking at the growing role of Russia in the field of international development cooperation More details

India and International Development Cooperation

Trade and investment linkages between India and the African continent have been growing rapidly, and recently, its role providing foreign assistance has become more prominent. The Rising Powers in International Development Programme is looking at the growing role of India in the field of international development cooperation. More details

Business from the BRICS

The Rising Powers in International Development Programme is looking at the growing role of business from the BRICS countries in the field of international development cooperation. More details

China and International Development Cooperation

China is now the African continent's biggest trading partner, and also involved in a wide range of development cooperation projects including in agriculture, health and social policy. The Rising Powers in International Development Programme is looking at the growing role of China in the field of international development cooperation. More details

Civil society and the BRICS

The Rising Powers in International Development Programme is looking at the growing role of civil society from the BRICS countries in the field of international development cooperation. More details

Brazil and International Development Cooperation

Brazil is a founding member of the BRICS group, Latin America's largest economy and the world's sixth-largest economy. The Rising Powers in International Development (RPID) programme is looking at Brazil's growing role in the field of international development cooperation. More details

China-UK Cooperation on African Trade and Investment for Poverty Reduction

This IDS led project aims to evaluate changing trade and investment relations between China, and also the UK, with Kenya and South Africa and the consequences of these changes. More details

Development Studies Learning Partnership

The Development Studies Learning Partnership was created under the BRICS Initiative in 2011, and enables collaborative learning between traditional and emerging actors in development, be they academics, researchers, practitioners or policy-makers. More details

Rising Powers Young Researchers Network (RP-YOUR)

Initially bringing together PhD students and early-career researchers exploring the role of rising powers in international development from across IDS and the University of Sussex, the Rising Powers-Young Researchers Network seeks to expand within Centre for Rising Powers and Global Development global networks. More details

Who Drives Climate-Relevant Policies in the Rising Powers?

This project is concerned with the political economy analysis of climate change policies. The central question of the project is who drives/obstructs climate change policies in the rising powers, paying special attention to renewable energy policies. More details

View all Research Programme's publications

Use this search to display this programme's publications and filter by journal, author, country and much more.


ER95 Front Cover

Indian Development Cooperation: the State of the Debate

IDS Evidence Report 95 (2014)

In this changing landscape, India is becoming an important player . India’s increased volume of development cooperation or DC (particularly to African countries), its clearer articulation of a rejection of ‘traditional’ aid principles, and its growing role as a representative of emerging economies that aim to act as a bridge between the North and South have led to it becoming a key figure in shaping the future of international DC. How is this new role being perceived domestically? More details

Strengthening_Evidence_Based_Policy_2014

Strengthening Evidence-Based Policy: Outputs November 2012 – March 2014

Accountable Grant Outputs Brochure (2014)

Knowledge and evidence are important elements of all policy processes. While the availability of more or higher quality evidence does not guarantee better policy processes, it is difficult to imagine how development policy and outcomes can be improved without it. More details

ER93 Front Cover

Senior International Associate Report (Ambuj Sagar): Meeting Multiple Energy Challenges: Lessons from India

IDS Evidence Report 93 (2014)

The Rising Powers in International Development (RPID) programme includes a provision for drawing on the experience of senior policymakers and policy advisers. This ‘Senior International Associates’ scheme is an effective way of injecting policy experience from the Rising Powers directly into the work of the RPID. More details

ER91 Front Cover

Rising Powers in International Development: the State of the Debate in South Africa

IDS Evidence Report 91 (2014)

South Africa occupies an interesting position in the international development debate. On the one hand, as Africa’s most developed, diversified and, until recently, largest economy representing close to one-third of sub-Saharan Africa’s gross domestic product (GDP), it is an active player in numerous global governance and development fora. More details

ER88 Front Cover

The Russian Federation’s International Development Assistance Programme: A State of the Debate Report

IDS Evidence Report 88 (2014)

Russia is unique among emerging donors for being a ‘re-emerging’ donor: the Soviet Union was one of the largest donor countries in the world, and Russia’s period as an aid recipient was relatively brief. Russian development cooperation is driven by key security and economic priorities, as well as resulting from commitments made to multilateral organisations. More details

PB70 Front Cover

Learning from India's Development Cooperation

IDS Policy Briefing 70 (2014)

In recent years, India has substantially increased the levels of its development cooperation. It has streamlined its development cooperation activities and put the principles of South-South Cooperation, including respect for national sovereignty, national ownership and independence, non-conditionality and mutual benefit, into action. More details

This is the cover image for the IDS Bulletin, 'China and International Development: Challenges and Opportunities'.

China and International Development: Challenges and Opportunities

IDS Bulletin 45.4 (2014)

In parallel to its domestic economic boom, China has grown increasingly active and influential on the international stage, including in global development. China’s re-emergence on the global stage is both a cause and a symptom of the fundamental sea change now affecting development assistance and policy. More details

PB69 Front Cover

Five Fingers or One Hand? The BRICS in Development Cooperation

IDS Policy Briefing 69 (2014)

The BRICS countries (Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa) are increasingly prominent in development cooperation activities in low-income countries in Africa and worldwide, presenting a potential alternative to the development aid model of traditional donors. More details

PB66 Front Cover

Building Mutual Understanding for Effective Development

IDS Policy Briefing 66 (2014)

In recent years a number of countries, referred to collectively as the rising powers, have achieved rapid economic growth and increased political influence. In many cases their experience challenges received wisdom on inclusive development. More details

ER59 Front Cover

Brazil's Engagement in International Development Cooperation: The State of the Debate

IDS Evidence Report 59 (2014)

The international development cooperation architecture has changed dramatically over the last decade. The global context, characterised by a lingering financial crisis and the emergence of new powers, has brought South–South Development Cooperation (SSDC) to the core of international development debate. More details

PB64 Front Cover

Understanding South Africa’s Role in Achieving Regional and Global Development Progress

IDS Policy Briefing 64 (2014)

As Africa’s most diversified, developed and (until recently) largest economy, South Africa occupies a unique position in the international development debate. It is an active player in global governance and development fora, maintains an extensive development partnership with its region, and is a member of the BRICS Forum of emerging powers (along with Brazil, Russia, India and China). More details

PB59 Front Cover

Beyond the New Deal: Global Collaboration and Peacebuilding with BRICS Countries

IDS Policy Briefing 59 (2014)

Development in fragile and conflict-affected contexts is both complex and contested. The New Deal for Engagement with Fragile States, endorsed by 35 countries and six organisations, is the current focus of efforts to harmonise aid approaches. More details

PB56 Front Cover

Brazil’s International Development Cooperation at a Crossroads

IDS Policy Briefing 56 (2014)

The IDS Rising Powers in International Development programme has launched a series of studies of key issues and debates on international development cooperation in BRICS countries, working with leading specialists from each country. This brief outlines the key findings of the ‘State of the Debate’ report on Brazil’s development cooperation policy. More details

PB55 Front Cover

The BRICS and the International Development System: Challenge and Convergence?

IDS Policy Briefing 55 (2014)

The sustained growth of rising powers, including the grouping known as the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) is reshaping global governance arrangements. Annual BRICS summits and inter-ministerial meetings seek to reform existing international financial and economic institutions and promote a multipolar system of global order. More details

ER 58 Front Cover

The BRICS and the International Development System: Challenge and Convergence?

IDS Evidence Report 58 (2014)

The ‘BRICs’ acronym, in its most common usage, derives from a report to investors by Goldman Sachs’ analyst Jim O’Neill, signalling the new dynamic that four large countries; Brazil, Russia, India and China, were bringing to the global economy at the beginning of the new millennium. More details

Policy Briefing 53

Promoting Greater Cooperation Between Russia and OECD Donors

IDS Policy Briefing 53 (2014)

Russia is unique amongst the BRICS group for being a ‘re-emerging’ donor. The USSR was one of the largest donor countries in the world. After a relatively brief period as a net aid recipient during the 1990s, Russia has once again become a significant provider of development assistance. More details

ER 56 Front Cover

Who Shapes Climate Action in India? Insights from the Wind and Solar Energy Sectors

IDS Evidence Report 56 (2014)

Within this paper, we specifically take an actor-centred perspective – focusing on players not just within the government but also private sector and civil society – to better understand the influence of such actors in shaping climate change action within India. Through this analysis, we aim to explore the underlying domestic political economy as well as the international linkages shaping climate action. More details

This is the cover for IDS Evidence Report 50, 'Advisory Council Seminar 3, 20 March 2013: IDS Rising Powers in International Development Advisory Council Discussion'.

Advisory Council Seminar 3, 20 March 2013: IDS Rising Powers in International Development Advisory Council Discussion

IDS Evidence Report 50 (2014)

This document presents a summary of a discussion held on 20 March, 2013 between five members of the Advisory Council of the IDS Rising Powers in International Development (RPID) programme and three IDS RPID staff members. More details

Image teaser for ER45

Does China's Economic Rise Help or Hinder the Development of its Neighbours?

IDS Evidence Report 45 (2013)

With its huge size, vast low-cost labour force, and deep industrial foundation, China has become a major producer of a wide range of manufactured goods. More details

The Economic Engagement Footprint of Rising Powers in Sub-Saharan Africa

The Economic Engagement Footprint of Rising Powers in sub-Saharan Africa: Trade, FDI and Aid Flows

IDS Evidence Report 43 (2013)

Estimates suggest that over the last decade both trade and foreign direct investment (FDI) from emerging economies to Africa ballooned. More details

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