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This subject develops the skills to understand and assess the social impacts of development, including international development projects, resource management, and proposed infrastructure or new policies. We do this in two ways: by looking at how to assess the impacts of proposed projects, and through evaluation techniques for existing developments or projects. In each case we develop practical skills and interdisciplinary techniques to appraise and evaluate impacts. These techniques draw from anthropology, development studies, and the policy sciences, and move beyond simple summative assessments and financial accounting. We consider the social and environmental contexts in which any form of appraisal is embedded, and the capacities of different actors (from the state to NGOs and community groups) to avert or mitigate negative impacts through learning, negotiation, and citizen participation. Examples, some presented by guest speakers, are drawn from Australia, Europe, the Americas, Africa, and Asia. At the completion of the subject students will have developed the conceptual skills to understand the impacts of development; be familiar with the range of methodologies and techniques used in impact assessment; understand development evaluation; and will be able to apply this in critical evaluation of the impact of projects and programmes.
Intended learning outcomes
To develop the skills to understand and assess the social impacts and to evaluate development, including international development projects, resource management, and planning proposals.
understand the role of SIA in the planning systems of western countries
understand evaluation techniquesinternational development projects
understand critical theories of evaluation and impact
be able to apply knowledge gained in the subject to conduct Social Impact Assessments and development evaluations.
Last updated: 3 November 2022