15 episodes

Since WW II and the establishment of UN agencies and Bretton Woods institutions, international development has grown into a global industry that faces systemic challenges. In the Rethinking Development Podcast we speak with both international development and humanitarian aid practitioners to discuss ethics, challenges, innovations, life experiences and lessons learnt.

Rethinking Development Podcast Host: Safa Shahkhalili

    • Non-Profit

Since WW II and the establishment of UN agencies and Bretton Woods institutions, international development has grown into a global industry that faces systemic challenges. In the Rethinking Development Podcast we speak with both international development and humanitarian aid practitioners to discuss ethics, challenges, innovations, life experiences and lessons learnt.

    The Challenges of our Time

    The Challenges of our Time

    Robert David Cohen is an award-winning poet, journalist, children’s rights expert and communications strategist. He is the director and co-founder of Rain Barrel Communications, a global consulting firm based in NYC. Rain Barrel gives strategic and...

    • 57 min
    Trailer

    Trailer

    Welcome to the Rethinking Development Podcast. The place where international development and humanitarian aid practitioners and leaders share their thoughts and reflections on ethics, challenges and the systemic issues that they face in their work. 

    • 3 min
    The Right to Freedom of Expression

    The Right to Freedom of Expression

    A journalist by training, Mikel Aguirre worked as a radio reporter for the public broadcast of the Basque autonomous region in Spain before joining the UNESCO Jakarta regional office in 2011. He launched the first regional programme on Youth and Civic Engagement, where media played a central role as means to empowering youth and strengthening their voices. Since 2015, Mikel has been working at the UNESCO office in Myanmar where he is leading the organization’s programme on Freedom of Expression. He works closely with the government and journalists to open up a space for independent media as well as promoting the right to free expression as a critical element of the democratic transition that Myanmar initiated in 2012 after decades of military rule that kept the country isolated from the rest of the world. Mikel speaks to us about understanding the role of each development partner, identifying the distinctive advantage of your organization, defending freedom of expression, the importance of collaboration and multilateralism, planting small seeds that can grow over time, the power of the media and the complexities of representation, the need to educate media consumers to become more conscious consumers, UNESCOs funding and organizational structure, the importance of putting more effort in learning about the country you are working in, and much more.

    • 55 min
    Dialogue and Citizen Participation

    Dialogue and Citizen Participation

    Paula Claycomb began her career in journalism before transitioning to the UN system in 1989. She worked with UNICEF on social change communication in Rwanda, Kenya, Afghanistan, East Timor, Sudan and many other countries. She served as Chief of the Landmines and Small Arms Group and as Senior Advisor for Communication for Development - managing the development of policies, guidelines and standards at the global level. Since her retirement from UNICEF in 2012, Paula has provided consulting services in strategic planning and communication for development and is now the Director of Rain Barrel Communications, an international communications consulting firm that co-creates social good initiatives with partners, with a special orientation to the wellbeing of children. Paula speaks with us about the importance of dialogue and participation of effected populations in C4D, the need for long term campaigns, working in the context of genocide and the evolution of humanitarian thinking, mine risk education, simultaneously being an activist and a staff member, increasing resources for communication, learning from past mistakes, and much more.

    • 57 min
    Beginning with Ourselves: Patriarchy, SHeroes and the Training of Changemakers

    Beginning with Ourselves: Patriarchy, SHeroes and the Training of Changemakers

    Kamla Bhasin is an Indian feminist, activist, author and facilitator. She is the Co-Founder of "Sangat" – A Global Feminist Network. She facilitates Sangat's annual South Asian Feminist Capacity Building Course on Gender, Sustainable Livelihoods, Human Rights and Peace. She is also the South Asia Coordinator of "One Billion Rising" - a global campaign to end violence against women and girls. Kamla worked with the FAO for 27 years where her worked focused on rural development and women's empowerment in Thailand, Bangladesh, India and other Asian countries. Kamla has written extensively on gender, women’s empowerment, participatory and sustainable development, participatory training, media and communication. Most of her books are written for activists and development workers. She has also written a large number of songs and slogans for the women's movement and books for children. She speaks to us about trickle down theory vs evaporation theory, top down development not reaching the poor, the importance of local knowledge and leadership in development, peoples participation, rural realities and her work in rural journalism in the 1970s, intersectionality, hierarchies in international development organizations, her life-long commitment to the training of change agents, collective learning experiences, capitalist patriarchy, and much more.

    • 58 min
    Working In & With Communities

    Working In & With Communities

    Andrea Burniske has more than 20 years of experience in international development, 15 of which were spent developing and leading programs and projects in countries such as Tajikistan, Peru, Colombia and Russia for various international development agencies. Her work has centered on environmentally sustainable economics and business development, women’s empowerment, and emergency responses, among other areas. She is currently working at Purdue University where she is the Chief of Party for a USAID-funded program named Long-Term Assistance and Solutions for Research (LASER) as part of the Partners for University-Led Solutions Engine (PULSE), which seeks to promote close collaboration around development challenges between academic researchers and NGOs and other development practitioners. She talks to us about the role of media in social development, social structures and power relationships, human flaws, working with government and donors, building trust by being in the field and developing sincere relationships, corruption, the bridge between academia and development and much more.

    • 1 hr