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Education University of Groningen Summer Schools

Development Studies in Tanzania

Women watering the land
Unfortunately, as we currently do not know how the coronavirus will progress globally in the coming months, we have made the difficult decision to cancel the University of Groningen Summer Schools 2020. We apologize for any inconvenience this exceptional situation may cause. Hopefully we will see you next year instead. Stay safe and healthy!

The current state of African societies demands a multidisciplinary approach to the very concept of development. For a long time, the instrumental use of this concept and of practices in development have ignored much of the social experience, i.e. people’s understanding of their own condition. The positivist rationale underpinning the experience of development deemed a vast majority of people as ‘underdeveloped’, reinforcing a biased perception of agency and of the self. More recently it has been argued that other factors should be considered to asses development such as gender equality and youth emancipation. This comes in line with a more humanistic view on social groups and the way they take the lead on their own processes of development.

In this summer school we take a stance on the contentions issues of development in the 21st century by searching for a holistic way to comprehend different societies in the globe. We examine the matter from multiples points of view taking into account different trajectories of development and how those might contribute to understand realities such as of people living in the large city of Dar es Salaam and in the small village of Usambara, in the northwest district of Lushoto in Tanzania. Our practical approach allows participants of this programme to come into contact with individual and collective experiences of local people in their everyday life. By offering a unique opportunity to engage in fieldwork groups that will be assisted by experts in qualitative methodologies applied to development issues, we expect participants to encounter diversity, to discuss interpretations and viewpoints, and to develop mutual respect towards all forms of knowledge.

The programme comprises of two weeks in total, including a short stay in Dar es Salaam from where the whole group will depart to stay longer in the highlands of Usambara. The region is known for its good climatic conditions and it is surrounded by communities of farmers. Since the 1940s, colonial administrators, post-independence governments, and international non-governmental agencies have been trying to address agroecological problems in Usambara region. Approaches to this issue have recently shifted to address the complex nature of the problem. In this context, one of the fields that public and private actors have been working on is introducing new technologies and advanced agrarian agroecological practices to support environmental resilience. This goes along with cross-cutting actions in education, women and youth emancipation, and inclusion of children with disabilities.

Practical information

Unfortunately, as we currently do not know how the coronavirus will progress globally in the coming months, we have made the difficult decision to cancel the University of Groningen Summer Schools 2020. Hopefully we will see you next year instead. Stay safe and healthy!

Dates & location July-August 2021 (tbc), Tanzania
Level BA/MA
Fee 2020 € 430
incl. accommodation, lunch during the programme and local transportation from Dar es Salaam to Usambara
Academic coordinator

Ana Carolina Rodrigues-Vasse - Globalisation Studies Groningen

Contact summerschoolTanzania
map tanzania

We invite students (advanced BA and MA level students) from all backgrounds that enjoy working in a highly international student and staff group .

It is expected that the participants have a sufficient command of the English language to actively participate in the discussions and to present their own work in English.

Course information

Key themes:

  • History of development interventions in Tanzania
  • The role of development assistance, especially coming from South-South cooperation
  • The state of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in Tanzania (with particular focus on SDG 2: zero hunger; SDG 4: quality education; SDG 5: gender equality; SDG 17: partnership for the goals).
  • Local development, food production and environmental resilience

Lectures by experts on: international development, gender studies, and agrarian change.

Initial coaching on research design using qualitative methodologies as well as leaning about their relevance to the field of development studies

Fieldwork to be facilitated by local universities and secular and non-secular non-governmental organisations in communities around Usambara, Lushoto district of Tanzania

The workload is estimated at 80 hours (ten days from 9-5 with lectures, workshops, assignments and fieldwork.
Participants who attend all sessions and who present a research proposal or paper on Friday will receive a certificate of participation signed by the coordinators of the summer school. Upon request the certificate can mention the workload of 40 hours (28 hours corresponds to 1 ECTS). Students can apply for recognition of these credits to the relevant authorities in their home institutions, therefore the final decision on awarding credits is at the discretion of their home institutions. We will be happy to provide any necessary information that might be requested in addition to the certificate of attendance.

Ana Carolina Rodrigues-Vasse, MSc.

Ana Carolina Rodrigues-Vasse, MSc., is currently a docent at the University of Groningen teaching courses in the Minor in Development Studies. She also works in development cooperation projects in vocational education and agriculture in Sub-Saharan Africa and collaborates with local non-government organisations in Mozambique as a consult. Her current fields of research are agricultural development, education and cooperation, even though socio-environmental conflict and natural resources economy are also on her background.

Anna Giraldo

PhD in Applied Statistics, Associate Professor of Economic Statistics at the Department of Statistical Science, University of Padova,
Director of the master course in Local Development

I'm an applied statistician and my research field is very broad: impact evaluation of public policies, measurement of employment and unemployment, effect of the economic crisis on households' behaviour, students' career in higher education.

The Summer School is an extension of the Minor on Development Studies of Globalisation Studies Groningen at the University of Groningen, but is open for all who are interested.

Globalisation Studies Groningen
Globalisation Studies Groningen
  • Beijing National University (China)

University of Dar es Salaam logo
University of Dar es Salaam (College of Social Sciences)
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Sebastian Kalowa Memorial University (Lushoto)
University of Padova (Italy)
Last modified:31 March 2020 10.31 a.m.