Global Knowledge Networks and International Development: Bridges across Boundaries

Global Knowledge Networks and International Development: Bridges across Boundaries

Global Knowledge Networks and International Development: Bridges across Boundaries

Global Knowledge Networks and International Development: Bridges across Boundaries

Synopsis

The 'knowledge agenda' has become a central part of the discourse of both developing societies and advanced economies. Governments and international organizations devote considerable financial resources to both in-house and contracted research. This volume draws together leading experts from academia, think-tanks and donor agencies, to examine the impact of transnational knowledge networks in the formulation of local, national and global policy in the field of international development and transition studies. These leadingnbsp;contributors pay particular attention to the global reach of research and the manner in which knowledge is incorporated into, and shapes, transnational policy domains. This volume will be of great interest to students, researchers and policy makers concerned with global policy, global governance and development.

Excerpt

A transnational 'community of practice' has emerged over the past decade, interested in the most effective use of research, data and analysis in the formation of policy. The contributors to this volume are part of the community. Drawn from think tanks, universities and development agencies, they share not only an interest in research and its intellectual attractions, but also a passion for putting research to its best use.

The papers are innovative in this respect. They provide a coherent examination of policy thinking and institutional practice across national boundaries, on the questions of how, why and to what extent research informs policy in the field of international development. Making strong links between research and policy is far from straightforward when the links cross boundaries: there are problems of culture and understanding involved, but also problems of power and participation. The papers do not shy away from these problems. Collectively, they seek to advance understanding of research, not simply as a global public good, but as a policy tool of international organisations, development agencies and civil society.

Our thanks go first to the authors of the papers, who have shared their thinking and experience, and done so both analytically and readably. We are particularly pleased that they all, without exception, combine both theory and practice: these are bridge-builders on their own account.

We would also like to express particular thanks to Lyn Squire and his colleagues at the GDN, who have provided opportunities for us to develop our ideas. Their enterprise embodies the kind of global knowledge network we seek to build. Our thanks also to Susanna Moorehead at the UK DFID for her understanding of this issue and her early buy-in to the process making this book possible.

Domestically, we would like to thank David Sunderland and Erwin Juenemann at the ODI and Tamas Dombas at the Centre for Policy Studies for their work on the text. At Routledge, Grace McInnes has provided timely support and advice. Finally, the Centre for the Study of Globalisation and Regionalisation series editor, Richard Higgott, has given us considerable latitude to explore these innovative new themes in the study of globalisation and development. We, of course, remain responsible for errors, omissions, misrepresentations, elisions and exaggerations.

Diane Stone and Simon Maxwell
March 2004

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