Call for papers: Conference of the Political Ecology Network (POLLEN), POLLEN18

POLLEN18: Political Ecology, the Green Economy, and Alternative Sustainabilities

When: 20-22 June 2018
Where: Oslo and Akershus University College, Oslo, Norway
Organised by: The Political Ecology Network (POLLEN) Secretariat; Oslo and Akershus University College; Centre for Environment and Development (SUM), University of Oslo; Noragric, Norwegian University of Life Sciences
Paper/Panel Submission Deadline: 15 December 2017
Conference Website:

NFU Master Thesis Award 2017: Winner!

The jury had a challenging task deciding the winner of the master thesis award 2017. We were impressed by the quality of the master theses, investigating a variety of development aspects, with solid methodological approaches based on empirical data. At the end of the process it was a close race between four strong candidates:

Tone Standal Vesterhus wrote an excellent thesis on Youth, Informality and Public Space, based on fieldwork in Nairobi, Kenya. She investigated how youth in the slums navigate their opportunities and how public spaces play a role in improving the lives of young people.  Antoine de Beny Puyvallée wrote a thesis on Norway’s International response to Ebola, where he investigated the altruism and self-interest involved in humanitarian responses. Henrik Wesenberg Dale wrote a thesis on the donor-recipient relationship between the EU and Etiopia. Amongst his findings he shows how the negotiating capital of the Ethiopian state is high as compared to other sub-Saharan countries. The forth candidate, Andrea Aleman-Andrade wrote about the agency of Andean Agrarian NGOs in the relationship with the Bolivian state´s political model during the last 20 years.

We are happy to announce that the winner of the thesis award is Andrea Aleman–Andrade, enrolled in the Development Management Master programme at the University of Agder, Norway.

Andrea’s master thesis explores the evolvement of the status and role of the NGOs in Bolivia during the past decades as the country has been undergoing different regime changes, culminating with the Andean nationalist-socialist policies of the present MAS government. How NGOs played a crucial role in facilitating the MAS «revolution», only to be later coopted by the socialist state, is an interesting story to be told and discussed. The candidate has through the examples of three different rural NGOS located in the highlands of Bolivia demonstrated how the NGOs have taken different approaches in their relationship to the state in different political periods: NGOs agency for reproduction, applying the demands of the state and the global civil society trends, and NGOs agency for social change, where NGOs have been working to support indigenous and peasant communities beyond the state. The candidate problematizes how the state since 2008 and the so -called commodity consensus wants to use the NGOs as instruments for its rigid laws that show a regimen on the path towards authoritarianism. The difference with the neoliberal period is that the state now demands a relation with NGOs only for the reproduction of the commodities consensus model. A new law demands NGOS to follow the Patriotic Agenda 2025, otherwise, they cannot access to official funds. This is a clear reflection of how the state now exercises direct power over the NGOs, aiming to control their activities and funds. In cases where the NGOs get the license by the state, but work in a different direction, the state can abolish the NGOs. In such cases, NGOs do not have the right to defend themselves. It means that there is no alternative of a relation with the state through an agency of social change that potentially differs from the state’s perspective. NGOs can then no longer be seen as expressions of civil society, but have rather become the instruments of the state. However, for its survival or for sharing similar approaches, NGOs are submitting to the law. Hence, NGOs are accepting to follow the commodities consensus state model, which implies the prioritization of the economy and “productivity”. In this scenario, the relationship of coproduction between NGOs with neoliberal governments seems to be reproduced by the commodities consensus political model, but in the shape of discipline. Again, the most affected by this relation are the Andean communities, since the rural development is based on the state agenda and not on their direct interests, far from the ‘bottom-up linkage approach’ . The state currently demands an Andean agriculture that could respond to neo-liberalistic trends through an increase in production, although climate change and farming strategies do not allow for it.

Despite some minor challenges with the language this is a well written and well-structured thesis where the candidate provides a solid theoretical framework applying the concepts of agency and govermentality when presenting the historical journey of NGOs through a shifting political context radically altering the relationship between organizations and the state. Aleman-Andrande demonstrates an excellent analytical capacity in her discussion and makes an important contribution to an ongoing, and increasingly more politicized and difficult discussion about the role of NGOs and Civil Society Organisations for development processes in Bolivia. The fact that the candidate gets involved in this types of debates, despite the potential harm it may bring for her future professional and academic life in Bolivia requires courage and thus also recognition.

Access the full thesis here:

UiO-PRIO Student Programme

Deadline: Oct 18!
As part of the strategic partnership with the University of Oslo, PRIO (Peace Research Institute Oslo) offers up to ten MA students a work place at PRIO for up to nine months. You will write your thesis in close connection with individual researchers, groups or even as part of an ongoing research project. For more information and how to apply, see

NFU Master Thesis Award 2017

Update: This call is now over, and the winner of 2017 has been announced. For next year´s Master´s Thesis Award, follow the website or newsletters for new call!

NFU Master’s Thesis Award 2017

Have you written an excellent master thesis in the field of development studies?

The award will go to a Master’s thesis that makes a contribution to the field of development, either by practical application or theoretical innovation. This field is broadly defined, and is not confined to the Global South.

Theses examined 1st of August 2016 or later are eligible for submission. The master student who submit the thesis must be examined at a Norwegian institution and be a registered member of NFU.

The winner will be announced mid-August, and the award will officially be handed out at the EADi Nordic conference in Bergen in August (20.-23 August). 


Please submit the thesis, along with a scanned transcript of your MA grade, and attach a 1-page summary of the thesis.

The Evaluation Committee consists of members from the NFU board.
The award is 5,000 NOK.

Submit your thesis here

For further questions contact NFU coordinator:
(NB: Answering will be slower than usual due to summer holiday and conference preparations).



March for Science Norway

Det er bare få dager igjen til markeringen!

Vi ser frem til fem flotte markeringer i Norge (Bergen, Bodø, Oslo, Trondheim, Tromsø) og over 500 markeringer totalt over hele verden 22. april!

March for Science Oslo

Lørdag, 22. april, kl15-17 fra Rådhusplassen til Stortinget med appeller og musikk begge steder.

Informasjon om markingen i Oslo blir fortløpende oppdatert:

Alle som har lyst kan gjerne henge opp plakater for å synliggjøre markeringen:

For å kunne holde en god dialog med politiet om forventet deltaktertallet og for å kunne bestille riktig lydsystem, ber vi alle som planlegger å delta å melde seg på via facebook eller Eventbrite.

Hvorfor går vi?

March for Science er svært aktuelt her i Norge, ikke bare for å støtte vårt globale forskningsfelleskap. Det pågar for tiden en aktiv diskusjon om bærekraftig bruk av våre ressurser, miljøvern pluss rett til et levelig klima for framtidige generasjoner, vitenskapelig ytringsfrihet, forskningsformidling og universitetenes/vitenskapens rolle i det “post-faktuelle” samfunnet.

Vi marsjerer for uavhengig forskning, kritisk tanke, fri forskningsformidlig og for betydning av disse verdiene i våre lokale og globale samfunn. Vitenskap spiller en stor rolle i vårt daglige liv, ofte på måter som vi ikke er direkte bevisst på eller anser som gitt. Kunnskap er vesentlig for bærekraftig utvikling og bruk av våre ressurser.

Politiske beslutninger skal bygge på de beste, fakta-baserte resultater vi har tilgjengelig. Vitenskapelige resultater kan ikke avvises eller ignoreres hvis de er politisk upassende eller ubekvemme.

Vi som et samfunn må bekrefte at det finnes en stor forskjell mellom en mening og et vitenskapelig-basert faktum. Det er viktig at vi stiller politikere til ansvar for deres uttalelser. Vi som et samfunn må respektere og fremme forskning som gir oss mer forståelse av verden rundt oss. God forskning vokser på: tid, god finansering samt respekt for kvalitet over kvantitet.

Det er meget viktig at vi formidler forskningens betydning og nytte men også dens begrensninger. Derfor kan forskere og akademikere ikke bare levere forskningsresultater og gå sin vei. Forskere må etablere en god dialog med samfunnet for å delta i tolkning, vurdering og omsetning av vitenskapelige funn.

Sist men ikke minst er vitenskap et globalt felt. Forskningssamarbeid ser ikke landegrenser. Når forskning angripes i et land, så angripes hele systemet. Derfor marsjerer vi verden rundt for å støtte vårt globale forskningsfelleskap.


Program i Oslo (se nettsiden for program i de andre byene også):


15.00 – 15.10 Ankomst
15.10 – 15.50 Appeller & Musikk
Beate Sjåfjell (Konferansier)
Leder av Concerned Scientists Norway
Some Feather – Musikk
Marit M. Simonsen – Spaltist i Klassekampen, vitenskapsformidler og tidligere leder I Foreningen Skepsis
Trine Lise Sundnes – Leder i LO-forbundet, Handel og Kontor
Karen O´Brien – Professor ved UiO, Medgrunlegger av cChange, og internasjonal ekspert på klimaendring
Birger Svihus – Professor ved NMBU, forsker, foreleser og forfatter med fokus på ernæring
15.50 Avmarsj til Stortinget

16.20 Ankomst
16.30 – 17.00 Appeller & Musikk
Sunniva Rose
 – Fysiker, forskninsformidler på rosablogg, radio og TV
Kunngjøres Senere – Representant fra Akademiet for Yngre Forskere
Inga Marie Nymo Riseth – Leder av Studentene og Akademikernes Internasjonale Hjelpefond (SAIH)
Diego Marin Rios – Tidligere leder i Colombias største studentorganisasjon og politisk flyktning i Norge
Mads With – Musikk
Kevin Steinman & Band – March for Science sin originale sang “Shoulders of Giants”

Ta gjerne kontakt ved spørsmål. Hvis dere ønsker informasjon også på engelsk, gjerne si fra!

Takk for at dere støtter March for Science!

Med beste hilsen,

Stefanie Brendecke

På vegne av March for Science Oslo styret

Twitter: @SciMarchNorway
Instagram: marchforsciencenorge

Conference: A gender perspective on demography and conflicts

The Research Council of Norway, Norad and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs invites you to the upcoming conference entitled “A gender perspective on demography and conflicts“, that will take place at Norad’s premises Oslo 27 April.

The conference will be opened by

  • Laila Bokhari, State Secretary, Ministry of Foreign Affairs
  • Jon Lomøy, Director General, Norad
  • Jesper W. Simonsen, Executive Director, Research Council of Norway

It will present some of the key research results and policy messages on population, gender, peace and security from two activities under the RCN’s NORGLOBAL Programme, ECONPOP and GENDER-EQ. Participation is open to all interested. For more details, see the conference_announcement on the web where you will also find the registration form for the conference. Please remember to register before 24 April!

Conference announcement:

The Norwegian Association for Development Research (NFU) supports March for Science

On April 22nd 2017 the March for Science will take place in many countries, also in Norway. Flagging “Science not Silence”, the march highlights the importance of evidence-based knowledge and the role of science as a fundament for decision-making, politics and society in general.

NFU supports the March for Science in Norway and encourages all who support an evidence-based-knowledge-society out in the streets to defend knowledge, and to promote independent research, critical engagement and the need to continue to push society forward – and not backwards.

Do you want more information?

Read more about March for Science and March for Science Norway for updates on the march in Norway.

Read more about NFU here.