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The notion of development influences and is influenced by all aspects of human life. Social science is but one representational option among many for conveying the myriad ways in which development is conceived, encountered, experienced, justified, courted, and/or resisted by different groups at particular times and places. In a previous volume, Popular Representations of Development, we identified three broad issues that we felt were important for future research agendas to consider in relation to the existence of alternative forms of knowledge about development. These can be thought of as respectively corresponding to processes of ‘translation’, ‘advocacy’, and ‘engagement’. The first is concern with how popular representations of development can successfully compete with or even supersede social scientific representations; the second relates to the politics of popular representations of development, and the way that popular productions shape debates; and the third, the extent to which popular representations of development represent alternative critiques that allow for the articulation of views that would be unacceptable by more orthodox means.


Lewis, David, Dennis Rodgers, and Michael Woolcock. "Innovations in Translation, Advocacy, and Engagement in Global Development." New Mediums, Better Messages? How Innovations in Translation, Engagement and Advocacy are Changing International Development. Ed. David Lewis, Dennis Rodgers, and Michael Woolcock. Oxford University Press, 2022, 1-15.