Inclusive Economies

Our work explores what characterises inclusive economies and how these can be achieved, particularly in a world where new technologies, rural to urban migration, and growing youth populations are disrupting and putting new pressures on people’s lives and livelihoods.

Our research looks at the impacts of business and markets on development and inequality and explores the potential for novel market-based solutions to work for the poorest and most marginalised based on gender, ethnicity and disability.  It explores alternatives that enable workers, consumers and communities to have a real voice.

It continues to revitalise debates on agriculture as a key pathway out of poverty and towards inclusion, particularly for young people. Our work is focused on identifying what opportunities exist in a period of agricultural commercialisation and rural transformation and how far different groups are able to access them.  It also understands how new technologies such as drones or blockchains pose risks, but can also be harnessed to improve the lives of the poorest and most marginalised people.  In a rapidly urbanising world where cities have become focal points for economic growth, jobs and innovation but also for poverty, inequality, vulnerability and conflict, our work explores what this means for both urban and rural people, and the opportunities and challenges they face in living safe and fulfilling lives.

Programmes and centres

Projects

Project

Linking Participation and Economic Advancement

In this project, IDS will draw upon and expand its rich experience at the forefront of thinking about participation in development, and our emerging work at the intersection of participation and markets. We will co-create along with the Economic Advancement Program (EAP) at the Open Society Foundations (OSF), a deeper understanding of participation in economic advancement in general, as well as how EAP can bring participatory approaches into its own practice.

Project

Challenges and Opportunities for Rural Youth Employment in Sub-Saharan Africa: A Mixed-Methods Study to Inform Policy and Programs

The goal of the Challenges and Opportunities for Rural Youth Employment in Sub-Saharan Africa study is to strengthen and deepen knowledge of: the employment dynamics of rural young people, and the relationships between these dynamics and welfare; and the socially and spatially differentiated perspectives of rural young people on work, employment and livelihoods. Research is taking place in Tanzania, Uganda, Ethiopia, Nigeria, Niger and Burkina Faso.

Project

Handbook of Financialization

Financialization has become the go-to term for scholarship that studies the vastly expanded role of finance in contemporary politics, economy and society. The goal of this handbook is to provide a comprehensive overview of the scholarship on financialization as it stands today, almost twenty years after the concept was first embraced by social scientists

Project

Youth in Fragile Settings

This project aims to build an evidence base that maps the role young people – particularly young women – have played in contributing to processes that sought to or did address fragility as well as examine gaps and challenges with the ultimate aim of increasing the voice and participation of young people around the world.

Recent work

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Brief

Strengthening Small and Medium Enterprises to Address Youth Unemployment Crisis in Zimbabwe

Published by IDS

After years of Mugabe’s anti-Western rhetoric closed Zimbabwe’s doors, his successor Emmerson Mnangagwa declared the country ‘open for business’. After such a long period of looking inward, this could be a chance to rebuild the economy through large-scale investment in the private sector, particularly small and medium enterprises (SMEs).

10 August 2018

Publication

Ideas from IDS: Graduate Papers from 2016/17

Published by IDS

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.

30 July 2018