27/09/2016: GTD Colloquium “Financialisation and Development” by Emma Mawdsley

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Date(s) - 27/09/16
1:30 pm - 3:30 pm

Turnzaal, Grote Gracht 90-92, Maastricht



Financialisation and Development

By Emma Mawdsley (University of Cambridge)

  Globalisation, Transnationalism & Development (GTD) Colloquium organized in association with Maastricht Centre for Citizenship, Migration and Development (MACIMIDE)


Economic growth has always been at the centre of (mainstream) international development. In earlier decades it was pretty well considered synonymous with development, while later periods finessed the aim of rising GDP with issues like environmental sustainability, social indicators of wellbeing, and poverty reduction. Ideologies of how growth is produced, and what constitutes a desirable economic profile, have been through major changes of course, notably in the shift from modernization /dependency theories to the Washington Consensus and beyond. In this talk I will explore a specific thread within economic development – that of financialisation. It is highly conceptually contested, but Epstein (2005:3) defines this as “the increasing role of financial motives, financial markets, financial actors and financial institutions in the operation of the domestic and international economies”. While financialisation has long been one dimension of ‘Development’ (from national economies to households and SMEs through microfinance), there appears to be a growing donor effort to deepen and extend financialisation in the global South in the name of ‘Development’. The talk will critically assess these issues and trends.

Dr.Emma Mawdsley is a reader in Human Geography and Fellow of Newnham College, at the University of Cambridge. She is interested in the politics (broadly interpreted) of international development. She has a particular interest in South-South development cooperation, but also in how this growing phenomenon and other national and global shifts are affecting the (so-called) ‘traditional’ donors. Her recent work includes research on DFID’s growing private sector-led growth agenda, for example, and (with Supriya Roychoudhuey) on how India is (or more often, isn’t) enrolling civil society actors in its formal development partnerships.


Upcoming GTD Colloquia:

  • Nov 23: Djamila Schans, Research and Documentation Center, the Netherlands
  • Dec 7, Caroline Wildeman, HIVOS- Netherlands
  • Jan 25, Clara Carvalho, Chair of the Center of International Studies (CEI-IUL).