Development Studies

University of California, Berkeley


Note: The Development Studies Major is being retired and replaced by Global Studies.  The deadline to declare Development Studies is Friday, December 8, 2017.  Please visit the Global Studies website or the Global Studies Page on the Berkeley Academic Guide for more information.  

Development Studies is administered by the International & Area Studies Academic Program (IAS).  IAS provides an interdisciplinary approach to the study of international and global issues at a historical moment of unprecedented interconnectedness, IAS trains students in the knowledge and skills that are fundamental components of global citizenship and practice. IAS has strategically adopted an interdisciplinary approach to such training, with the belief that no single discipline can prepare students in the depth and breadth necessary for a complex and reflexive understanding of world history and contemporary globalization. Accordingly, IAS offers interdisciplinary core courses in fields such as Political Economy and Global Studies and then incorporates courses offered through many other departments, offering students a rigorous, but flexible, curriculum which recognizes that learning takes place both inside and outside the classroom.

The Development Studies major focuses on social transformation or change. The problems of social transformation are urgent, massive, complex, and often transcend the boundaries of conventional academic disciplines.

Undergraduate Program

Development Studies: BA

Graduate Program

There is no graduate program in Development Studies.

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Development Studies

DEV STD C10 Introduction to Development 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2017, Spring 2017, Fall 2015
This course is designed as an introduction to comparative development. The course will be a general service course, as well as a prerequisite for the upper division 100 series. It is assumed that students enrolled in 10 know little about life in the Third World countries and are unfamiliar with the relevant theory in political economy of development and underdevelopment. The course will be structured around three critical concepts: land, labor
, and work.
Introduction to Development: Read More [+]

DEV STD 24 Freshman Seminar 1 Unit

Terms offered: Fall 2015, Spring 2014
The Freshman Seminar Program has been designed to provide new students with the opportunity to explore an intellectual topic with a faculty member in a small seminar setting. Freshman seminars are offered in all campus departments, and topics vary from department to department and semester to semester. Enrollment is limited to 15 freshmen.

Freshman Seminar: Read More [+]

DEV STD C100 History of Development and Underdevelopment 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2017, Spring 2016, Spring 2015
Historical review of the development of world economic systems and the impact of these developments on less advanced countries. Course objective is to provide a background against which to understand and assess theoretical interpretations of development and underdevelopment.

History of Development and Underdevelopment: Read More [+]

DEV STD 150 Advanced Studies in Development Studies 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2017, Fall 2016, Fall 2015
Advanced multidisciplinary research in current issues and topics of development. Seminars will focus on specific geographical areas with appropriate comparative material included. A major research project is required as well as class presentations. Topics change each semester.

Advanced Studies in Development Studies: Read More [+]

DEV STD 192 Senior Thesis 3 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2016, Spring 2010, Spring 2009
This course is designed to provide a vehicle for undergraduate students interested in writing a major paper on a development topic. The paper should be approximately 30 pages in length. The student and faculty sponsor should agree upon the topic in advance.

Senior Thesis: Read More [+]

DEV STD H195 Senior Honors Thesis Seminar 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2017, Spring 2016, Spring 2015
Honors students are required to research and write a thesis based on the prospectus developed in International and Area Studies 102. The thesis work is reviewed by the honors instructor and a second reader to be selected based on the thesis topic. Weekly progress reports required.

Senior Honors Thesis Seminar: Read More [+]

DEV STD 197 Field Studies 1 - 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2008, Fall 2005, Summer 2005 10 Week Session
Supervised experience relevant to specific aspects of Development Studies in off-campus organizations. Regular individual meetings with faculty sponsor and written reports required.

Field Studies: Read More [+]

DEV STD 198 Directed Group Study 1 - 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2011, Fall 2006, Spring 2006
Directed group study (upper division).

Directed Group Study: Read More [+]

DEV STD 199 Supervised Independent Study and Research for Undergraduates 1 - 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2010, Fall 2009, Spring 2009
Enrollment is restricted by regulations of the College.

Supervised Independent Study and Research for Undergraduates: Read More [+]

Faculty and Instructors

+ Indicates this faculty member is the recipient of the Distinguished Teaching Award.


Elisabeth Sadoulet, Professor. Economics, agriculture, labor management & policy.
Research Profile


Clare Talwalker, Lecturer. Qualitative methods, global poverty action, human rights, South Asia and economic anthropology.

Emeritus Faculty

Gillian P. Hart, Professor Emeritus.

+ Michael J. Watts, Professor Emeritus. Islam, development, Africa, social movements, political economy, political ecology, geography, South Asia, peasant societies, social and and cultural theory, US agriculture, Marxian political economy.
Research Profile

Contact Information

International and Area Studies Academic Program

101 Stephens Hall

Phone: 510-642-4466

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Associate Dean, Interdisciplinary Social Sciences & Acting Chair, Development Studies

Max Auffhammer

101 Stephens Hall

Lead Academic Adviser

Ethan Savage

101 Stephens Hall

Phone: 510-643-4156

Undergraduate Academic Adviser

Dreux Montgomery

101 Stephens Hall

Phone: 510-643-4157

Undergraduate Academic Adviser

Nithya Raghunathan

101 Stephens Hall

Phone: 510-643-7282

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