Evolution and Development of Development Studies in Ghana

  • Philip Duku Osei


This chapter looks at the evolution of content and pedagogy in development studies, linking these with changes in the global discourse on development and policy (also known as international development), as well as paradigm shifts in the theory of development. The chapter maps out the field/sub-discipline into three categories: (i) philosophical basis of “academic development studies” (evolution of undergraduates and Graduates taught and research degree programmes in Development Studies), (ii) methods used in the delivery of development studies, (iii) “practice development studies/development policy,” including research and advisory as well as the changing management of development co-operation, and how these have in turn facilitated research, teaching and training in Development Studies. As part of the discussion of policy relevance of the discipline, the chapter also evaluates the arrival and contribution of development policy think tanks to the development discourse in Ghana and what synergies exist in the relationships between think tanks and academic development studies. Finally, analysis of academic development studies will be assessed in the context of the growth that has been observed in pedagogy in international development studies in OECD countries in a bid to determine whether Development Studies, as a subject, in Ghana has attained commensurate maturity. In the light of these objectives, the main methodology adopted in delivering this chapter is interpretive, and the techniques adopted are exploratory and historical-comparative. The qualitative information sought was ascertained through documentary review and interviews with key informants who have been leaders in the development of the sub-discipline of development studies, and from class discussions with both undergraduate and graduate students.


Development studies Ghana Ideology and philosophy Methods Institute of statistical Social and economic research Non-governmental organizations 


  1. Amin, S. (1976). Unequal development: An essay on the social formations of peripheral capitalism. New York: Monthly Review Press.Google Scholar
  2. Amoah, C. M., Adiku, S. G. K., & Owusu, E. O. (2008). New developments on health, agricultural resources and socio-economic activities in the Volta Basin, Ghana. Accra: The Volta Basin research project.Google Scholar
  3. Asante, F. A., & Ayee, J. R. A. (2008). Decentralization, “Poverty reduction, and the Ghana poverty reduction strategy.” In J. Amoako-Tuffour & B. Armah (Eds.), Poverty reduction strategies in action. Lanham: Lexington Books.Google Scholar
  4. Ayaode, A. A. (1988). State without citizens: An emerging African phenomenon. In D. Rothchild & N. Chazan (Eds.), The precarious balance: State & society in Africa (pp. 100–120). Boulder: Westview Press, Inc.Google Scholar
  5. Ayee, J. R. A. (1995). An anatomy of policy implementation: The case of decentralization policies in Ghana. Aldershot: Avebury.Google Scholar
  6. Bening, R. B. (2010). Ghana administrative areas and boundaries. Accra: Ghana Universities Press.Google Scholar
  7. Britwum, A. O., Ghartey, N. K. T., & Agbesinyale, P. (2006). Organizing labour in the informal sector: The conditions of rural agriculture in Ghana. Accra: Ghana Universities Press.Google Scholar
  8. Brown, C. K. (1986). Rural development in Ghana. Accra: Ghana Universities Press.Google Scholar
  9. Bryant, C., & White, L. (1982). Managing development in the third world. Boulder: Westview.Google Scholar
  10. Cardoso, F. H., & Faletto, E. (1979). Dependency and development in Latin América. Berkeley: University of California Press.Google Scholar
  11. Chang, H. -J., & Grabel, I. (2004). Reclaiming development: An alternative economic policy manual. London: Zed books.Google Scholar
  12. Chazan, N. (1988). Patterns of state-society incorporation and disengagement in Africa. In D. Rothchild & N. Chazan (Eds.), The precarious balance: State & society in Africa (pp. 121–148). Boulder: Westview Press, Inc.Google Scholar
  13. Clarke, R. (2002). Introduction. In C. Kirkpatrick, R. Clarke, & C. Polidano (Eds.), Handbook on development policy and management. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar.Google Scholar
  14. Delapalme, N. (2011). African governance: The importance of more and better data. Governance: An International Journal of Policy, Administration, and Institutions, 24(1), 1–3. January 2011. Commentary.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Esman, M. J. (1991). Management dimensions of development: Perspectives and strategies. West Hartfield: Kumarian Press.Google Scholar
  16. Escobar, A. (1995). Encountering development: The making and unmaking of the third world. Princeton: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
  17. Frank, A. G. (1978). Dependent accumulation and underdevelopment. New York: Monthly Review Press.Google Scholar
  18. Fukuda-Parr, S., Lopes, C., & Malik, K. (2002). Capacity for development: New solutions to old problems. London: Earthscan Publications.Google Scholar
  19. Healey, J., & Robinson, M. (1992). Democracy, governance and economic policy sub-saharan Africa in comparative perspective. London: Overseas Development Institute.Google Scholar
  20. Hoogvelt, A. (1997). Globalization and the post colonial world: The new political economy of development. Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press.Google Scholar
  21. Jolly, R. (2002). The history of development policy. In C. Kirkpatrick, R. Clarke, & C. Polidano (Eds.), Handbook on development policy and management. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar.Google Scholar
  22. Killick, T. (1978/2010). Development economics in action: A study of development policies in Ghana (1st and 2nd ed.). London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  23. Killick, T. (1987). A reaction too far. Economic theory and the role of the state in developing countries. London: Overseas Development Institute.Google Scholar
  24. Leftwich, A. (2000). States of development: On the primacy of politics in development. Cambridge: Polity Press.Google Scholar
  25. Lewis, A. W. (1954). Economic development with unlimited supplies of labour. Manchester School, 22 (May), 139–191.Google Scholar
  26. Lewis, A. W. (1955). A theory of growth. Homewood: Richard D. Irwin.Google Scholar
  27. Loxley, J. (2004). What is Distinctive about International Development Studies. Canadian Journal of Development Studies/Revue canadienne d’études du développement, 25(1), 25–38. doi:10.1080/02255189.2004.9668958. Accessed 24 July 2013.Google Scholar
  28. Martinussen, J. (1995). Society, state and market: A guide to competing theories of development. London: Zed Books Ltd.Google Scholar
  29. Mosley, P., Harrigan, J., & Toye, J. (1991). Aid and power: The world bank and policy-based lending (Vol. 1., Chaps. 1 and 2). London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  30. North, D. C. (1995). The new institutional economics and third world development. In J. Harriss, J. Hunter, & C. M. Lewis, (Eds.) The new institutional economics and Third World development (pp. 17–26). London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  31. Osei, R. D. (2008). Aid policy and accelerated development: Which approach for Ghana? Accra: Institute for Democratic Governance.Google Scholar
  32. Ostrom, Elinor, (1990). Governing the commons: The evolution of institutions for collective action. New York: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Ostrom, Elinor (1993). Institutional incentives and sustainable development: Infrastructure policies in perspective. Oxford: Westview Press.Google Scholar
  34. Porter, D., Allen, B., & Thompson, G. (1991). Development in practice: Paved with good intentions. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  35. Rostow, W. W. (1960). The stages of economic growth: A non-communist manifesto. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  36. Sandbrook, R. (1993). The politics of Africa’s economic recovery. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Sen, A. K. (1999). Development as freedom. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  38. Schuurman, F. J. (1993). Beyond the impasse: New directions in development theory. London: Zed Books.Google Scholar
  39. Songsore, J. (2011). Regional development in Ghana: The theory and the reality. Accra: Woeli Publishing Services.Google Scholar
  40. Sumner, A. (2006). What is Development Studies? Development in Practice, 16(6), 644–650. Accessed 24 July 2013.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Thelen, K. (1999). Historical institutionalism in comparative politics. Annual Review of Political Science, 2, 369–404.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Toye, J. (1991). Ghana. Aid and power: The world bank and policy-based lending (Vol. 2). London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  43. Toye, J. (1987). Dilemmas of development: Reflections of the counter-revolution in development theory and policy. Oxford: Blackwell.Google Scholar
  44. University of Ghana. (2010). Humanities handbook 2010. Legon: Ghana Universities Press.Google Scholar
  45. West India Royal Commission. (1945). The report of West India royal commission (The Moyne Report).Google Scholar


  1. Institute of Scientific Social and Economic Studies (ISSER), Legon. “Capability Statement.” Accessed 20 Oct 2013.
  2. The Centre for Development Studies, University of Cape Coast. Wikipedia. Online encyclopaedia. Accessed 20 Oct 2013.
  3. University of Sussex, Institute of Development Studies. Accessed 20 Oct 2013.
  4. Princeton University Library. (n.d.) W. Arthur Lewis Papers, 1892–1990 (bulk 1950–19950): Finding Aid. Princeton: Princeton University Department of Rare Books and Special Collections. Accessed 20 Oct 2013.
  5. http/findingaids.princeton.pdf. Accessed 12 Feb 2013.Google Scholar
  6. University of Manchester, UK. Accessed 20 Oct 2013.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Social and Economic StudiesUniversity of the West IndiesMonaJamaica

Personalised recommendations