In the Economic and Political Development (EPD) Concentration, second-year students recently returned from their January field travel for the Workshop in Development Practice. Through the workshop – which is the capstone course for EPD students – 21 teams of students are working with a diverse range of development organizations in 17 countries.
Lamia Bazir and Aura Martinez spent two weeks in Niger with Transparency International’s national chapter. For their project, which is supporting Transparency’s efforts to involve more women in their anti-corruption activities, they met with women leaders from politics, the judiciary and civil society, as well as engaging with women’s groups, local authorities and religious leaders in rural areas. Other members of their team will travel in March to Zimbabwe to conduct similar fieldwork with the Transparency chapter there.
Also in January, Yigit Canay, Rachana Kumar and Alissa Sevrioukova traveled to Cambodia to work with their client, Open Development Cambodia, which is the only open data platform available in the Mekong Subregion. To help ODC develop a “donor and development assistance” section of their website, the three students meet with the ODC team as well as donors and local NGOs. Other members of the SIPA team will travel back to Cambodia in March to present their proposals to ODC.
Meanwhile, Mashael AlShalan, Aliya Shalabekova and Liang Zhao traveled to Kazakhstan to meet with their clients at the National Agency for Technological Development and the Ministry of Economy and Budget Planning, as well as other government and private sector stakeholders. These meetings laid the groundwork for the team’s analysis and recommendations on the development of small and medium-sized enterprises in Kazakhstan.
All of the EPD workshop teams will present the main results of their work during a two-day workshop at SIPA on May 1 and 2. The schedule of presentations will be posted on SIPA’s online events calendar by early April. The presentations will be open to the public, and prospective students are especially welcome to attend.