OTHER-20595 Assessing the Marginalization of Global South researchers in Economic Development Policy


Wealth and power are unevenly distributed between the global North and South. Although a certain degree of inequality may be necessary to provide incentives for efficiency, there is a growing consensus that the extent of inequality observed in the world is too high. A United Nations report estimates that the richest 1% are almost all located in the global North and hold 40% of the world’s wealth. What makes inequality particularly unacceptable is that a large share of human beings do not have access to basic capabilities to achieve the lives that they have reason to value (Sen, 1999). The large majority of them reside in the Global South; and their lack of opportunities is in part due to inadequate public policies. This study builds upon a growing literature that emphasizes the importance of providing voice and power to local experts on the policy process. See, for example, the 2014 Third World Quarterly special issue, ‘New Actors and Alliances in Development’, and Easterly (2013). Moreover, Nunn (2019: 1362) convincingly argues that “the narrative in the policy world tend to focus on one policy (i.e., foreign aid) among many” mainly because it is self-serving for the donors. This stems from the lack of sufficient engagement and involvement of those who are embedded in the local context in such processes. However, as Kamruzzaman (2017: 39) points outs, “the roles of national development experts (NDEs) remain rather unexplored in development.” The main objective of this proposal is to contribute towards measuring the extent of Global South researchers’ marginalization in development policy. We propose collecting new quantitative and qualitative information and computing a number of estimates. This proposal also attempts to identify the underlying reasons and obstacles of Southern marginalization in economic development policy; and finally, discuss alternative responses to increase the Southern voice effectively.


Project leader: Lucas Ronconi

Project researchers: Junette Perez | Nisha Arunatilake | Christian Arnault Emini

Scientific mentors: John Cockburn

Journal publication

No journal publications.

Working Papers

Title Modified Size Comments Recommendations
Assessing the Participation of Researchers from Lower-Middle-Income Countries in Economic-Development-Policy Debates 2021-12-16 1.21MB 0 0

Policy Briefs

No policy briefs.

Final report

No final reports.


No proposals.

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