It gives me great pleasure to present this first edition of published term papers authored by IDS graduates (2016/17) from across our suite of master’s degrees.
At IDS, our vision is of equal and sustainable societies, locally and globally, where everyone can live secure, fulfilling lives free from poverty and injustice. Cutting-edge research, knowledge, and evidence is critical to realising this vision and shaping, informing, and navigating change. These papers make an essential contribution to this body of knowledge and current development debates.
Each year, in September, IDS welcomes a new cohort of development scholars and practitioners who come to read and study for a master’s degree. They bring their experience and enthusiasm, their commitment to international development, and their ideas. We expect a lot from these scholars and practitioners during their time at IDS. We expect them to demonstrate, in their thinking and in their assignments, considerations of how to make a difference in the world. We ask them to help us extend our commitment to engaged excellence, to go beyond academic knowledge for its own sake and to use knowledge to help reduce inequalities, accelerate sustainability, and build more inclusive and secure societies.
As illustrated in this issue, each year, our expectations are met and surpassed with papers which show creative reasoning and learning, and which in turn inform and shape our thinking at IDS, providing new perspectives, ideas, and applications. In the course of a year, over 1,200 pieces of work are written and marked at IDS, much of it of fantastic quality. Obviously we cannot publish all of it, yet in producing this edition, we celebrate both these specific papers and the buzz generated by shared intellectual endeavours and from both individual and collective desires to bring about positive change. This issue makes an important contribution to major development challenges and deserves to be read.