Institute for Global Sustainable Development


We aim to transform our communities, our world and ourselves, with research that tackles global development challenges. We work with partners across the globe seeking global justice and sustainability.

Find out more on the Institute for Global Sustainable Development website.

Latest blog posts

Collaborating with & exhibiting youth: reflections on process

Date: 8 December 2023

Author: Paula Meth

Meaningful collaboration with youth was a key methodological principle for our wider research project focused on youth and the work/housing nexus in Ethiopia and South Africa. The project also presented various opportunities to exhibit their voices and experiences, using visual and oral technologies. How these events played out, their collaborative capacity & their significance is however up for debate.

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Reflections on our Zimbabwe “Women’s Video Story Circle” event, February 2023

Date: 8 June 2023

Author: Pamela Richardson

As part of the ESRC Festival of Social Science 2022, I collaborated with PADA Platform, Kufunda, and Video-co-lab, to create and deliver an online digital storytelling workshop programme, which ran from October to December 2022. 

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How WhatsApp can help you assess the impact your projects

Date: 17 May 2023

Author: Emma Heywood

In fragile contexts, gathering audience feedback is a challenge. WhatsApp can be an inclusive solution to get in touch with hard-to-reach communities, reflects Emma Heywood, researcher at the University of Sheffield. 

Read more on Emma's blog (previously published by Deutsche Welle Akademie)

Image of women's radio listening group in Niger (Source: Emma Heywood)

This is a picture of the front cover of Colonising Disability: impairment and otherness in the British empire, c. 1800-1914. The picture on the front of the book is a photograph of a group of blind girls reading a Braille book whilst standing in a garden.

Writing Colonising Disability

Date: 5 May 2023

Author: Esme Cleall

Colonising Disability (published by Cambridge University Press in 2022) is my attempt to understand how disability was understood in the nineteenth-century British Empire. When I started doing the research that fed into the book, around about ten years ago I had just started as a lecturer in the History of the British empire at the University of Sheffield. Academically speaking, I wanted to build on my doctoral research on nineteenth-century missionary attitudes to gender and race which had been recently published as Missionary Discourses of Difference

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“Make it Grow” Leverages Smartphone Video-Making to Support Community Food Start-ups

Date: 27 April 2023

Author: Pamela Richardson & Alexandra Plummer

Make it Grow is an initiative affiliated to the Institute for Sustainable Food and the Institute for Global Sustainable Development at the University of Sheffield. Led by Dr Pamela Richardson, Make it Grow supports community groups and NGOs to build capacity and create participatory video proposals, in order to attract funding and small grants for sustainable food initiatives. The success of the pilot program in Zimbabwe has spurred us to continue to advocate for community video proposals and to scale out the approach. We have been busy spreading the word about Make it Grow through in-person and online events and have some exciting future plans in the pipeline. 

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Better hybrid workshops: As if people, not screens, mattered: Participatory experiences in Jordan

Date: 28 February 2023 

Author: Dorothea Kleine

Most of us have now been to a “hybrid” event. Coming out of (this phase of) the pandemic, hybrid events are popular, as they seem to combine the benefits of online (geographically remote participants can join with ease) with the benefits of in-person (a fuller relational, unmediated, spontaneous experience, with a greater affective dimension) workshops. 

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Date: 5 July 2022

Author: Brittany Bunce

Index-based agricultural insurance (IBAI) is one of many financial derivatives that are being promoted with the intention of mitigating smallholder vulnerability in the context of climate change, market uncertainty and the rollback of state support to agricultural producers. 

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Date: 24 June 2022

Author: Emmanuel Sulle

Because the “blue economy” and “green economy” concepts are gaining momentum in Tanzania’s sustainable development plans, citizens need to understand what these terms mean.

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Date: 27 May 2022

Author: Amrita Sen

Biodiversity and its conservation have been at the centre-stage of environmental social science scholarship, with a wide range of recent works looking even deeper and exploring into newer conceptual engagements on conservation policies. 

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Date: 21 April 2022

Author: CwC team

An open-access paper summarising key findings on livelihoods, vulnerability and coping with Covid-19 in rural Mozambique from the 'Livelihood impacts of coping with Coronavirus in rural Africa’ (CwC) research project has just been published in World Development.

Read more: English version / Portuguese version