NFU General Assembly 2019

All NFU members are cordially invited to the NFU General Assembly.

Date: 3 December 2019
Time: 4-6 PM
Place: Fafo, Borggata 2B, 0650, Oslo

1. Constitute meeting and approval of agenda
– Election of General Assembly Chair and two reporters
– Approval of agenda
2. Board changes
3. NFU annual report 2019
4. Annual plan and budget for 2020
5. Debate: NFU strategic planning for development research
6. Incoming business

Valerinne P. Hutagalung
NFU Coordinator

Open Call For NFU Conference 2020

Norwegian research institutions and universities are invited to arrange the biennial NFU conference in fall 2020 (August-November).

Norsk Forening for Utviklingsforskning, the Norwegian Association for Development Research (NFU), arranges the national conference in close cooperation with the host institution. On average, this conference has approximately 150 participants and is a two-days event, including 30-50 presenters. In addition to the national conferences, NFU co-organize Nordic conferences in cooperation with sister institutions in our neighbouring countries. We also have three permanent panels (2019-2021) to ensure dedication and continuation on key topics, please see

We encourage interested research communities and institutions to submit a proposal to host the national NFU conference 2020 and write a short concept note (1-2 pages) on conference topic and potential sub-topics, by 15 December 2019 to the NFU board at The NFU board will respond shortly thereafter. Call for working groups and papers could be circulated in in January-February 2020.

The host institution are encouraged to submit a proposal within their interest field, which may include but are not limited to topics such as decolonization debates, global environment challenges and political ecology, future of development research, the sustainable development goals, and/or (new) actors in international development.

NFU will assist in planning, applying for funding through the Norwegian Research Council and arranging the conference.

For enquiries, please contact, or NFU chair Randi Solhjell at

Continue reading “Open Call For NFU Conference 2020”

Joint Nordic Conference on Development Research 2019

The 5th Joint Nordic Conference on Development Research that NFU co-organized with our sister institutions (Denmark’s FAU, Finland’s FSDR, and Swedish’s SDSN) on 27 and 28 June 2019 has been successfully implemented. The conference was hosted by the Copenhagen Business School and attended by more than 150 participants from across the globe.

The conference titled “Knowledge Production in North-South Collaboration: Challenges in an Era of New Global Divides” had 2 keynote speakers. The first one was delivered by Prof. Gurminder Bhambra, Professor of Postcolonial and Decolonial Studies in the School of Global Studies, University of Sussex titled “Neoliberal Inequalities and Colonial Histories: Knowledge Production, Borders, and Reparations”. And the second one was delivered by Melissa Leach, Director of the Institute of Development Studies (IDS) at the University of Sussex titled “Addressing Global Challenges Through Engaged Excellence: Pathways and Roadblocks”.

Following each of the keynote speeches, 13 interesting panels were held in the span of the two days: “The SDGs in a North-South Comparative Perspective”, “Perspectives on Research Capacity Building and Research Partnerships in and with the South?”, “An Emerging Field of Knowledge: Business and Development Studies?”, “Religion and Development”, “Exploring the Potential of the Civic Space Concept”, “Development Regionalism in the Global South: Return of Sovereignty?”, “Beyond Old and New Divisions: Informal and Precarious Work in the North and South”, “Capacity Development as Knowledge Production for Efficiency, Safety, and Digitalization at Tema Port, Ghana”, “Building Research Partnerships for Quality and Equity in Eritrean Education”, “Challenging Actors in International Development”, “Social and Environmental Challenges in the South”, “Gender Equality and Sustainable Development”, and “Political Ecology: Politics, Power, and Environmental Change”.

In addition to the keynote speeches and panels, there were also a plenary session on “Agency in a Changing World of Development”, a (pre)book launch on “Business and Development”, Danida alumni prize and the launch of their retrospective study, discussion/conversations at the EADI Roundtable: Development Studies in the New Millenium, and last but not least, closing session on “Knowledge Production in North-South Relations: Experiences and Practices from the Perspectives of Nordic Aid Agencies”.

We are very delighted to see very insightful and interesting conference this year and would like to thank all speakers, panels, paper presenters, moderators, and NFU members for this successful turnout of event.

The special issue of Forum for Development Studies on this theme will be published soon.

Here’s a glimpse of it for those of you who unfortunately couldn’t make it this year. 😊

Citizen Initiatives: Change Makers for the SDGs?

On Thursday 20 and Friday 21 juni
ENABEL Conference Center, Brussels

The Sustainable Development Goals aim to leave no one behind but reaching these global goals is also everyone’s business… or are they some people’s business more than other’s? How can we value our participation in Agenda 2030?

This two day network conference sheds lights on the role of a little exposed player in the SDG agenda: ‘ordinary’ people involved in North-South cooperation, the so-called ‘citizen initiatives for global solidarity’. The conference starts from the finding that many European citizens are involved in cross border partnerships for international solidarity.

From different contexts and disciplines we will question the role of cross border citizen’s initiatives in reaching the sustainable development goals and discover some tools to help them value their activities. Continue reading “Citizen Initiatives: Change Makers for the SDGs?”

The 5th Joint Nordev: Call for Working Groups and Panels

The 5th Joint Nordic Conference on Development Research (NorDev)
‘Knowledge Production in North-South Collaboration: Challenges in an Era of New Global Divides’
27-28th June 2019, Copenhagen

Call for working groups and panels

Asymmetric local and global power relations are on the rise. These include deepening divides between North and South. Politically, academically, socially and on a range of other fronts, Northern governments have increasingly returned to a narrow minded, self-oriented development path. Despite official rhetoric such as the SDGs and the Paris Declaration, the spirit and practice of solidarity is more remote than for years. Restrictions on academic movement, prioritization of North-centred issues and lack of interest in addressing key social and environmental challenges in the South are some of the worrying trends. However, divides and imbalances are not only observable between countries and regions, but emerging within societies across the planet. Elite projects and exclusivist populism are a global phenomenon and affect the well-being of people everywhere.

The 5th Joint Nordic Conference on Development Research aspires to address these trends and challenges through a format including keynote presentations, panels and working groups, roundtables and poster presentations, and to enable dialogue and networking between participants from all parts of the world. We welcome especially contributions that analyse and challenge global divides in the thematic areas of knowledge production; institutions of global governance; distribution of resources and wealth but also of risks; migration and climate change policies; or the formulation and implementation of the SDGs, to name but a few.

We invite proposals for working groups and panels. Each working group (section) consists of up to three panels. Each panel is planned for 90 minutes and should consist of 3-4 papers, a chair and a discussant. Working groups can have a minimum of 3 and a maximum of 12 papers. It is also possible to propose single panels, consisting of 3-4 paper givers or contributors. Panels may also be organised as roundtables or poster presentations.

Continue reading “The 5th Joint Nordev: Call for Working Groups and Panels”

Call for permanent panels at NFU conferences 2019 – 2021

Call for permanent panels at NFU conferences 2019-2021

Are you working on an exciting research theme within development studies? We invite established research groups and clusters to propose and take responsibility in organizing panels on a single, broad theme, for three years connected to the annual NFU conferences: The Norwegian development conference by NFU (2020) and the Nordic development conferences (2019, 2021).

The permanent panels intend to provide continuity in the themes and research groups represented at these conferences. This will enable the research groups to consolidate research networks around their theme, and other conference participants to get an opportunity to follow a theme develop over time. The panels should strive to make the geographical focus as broad as possible.

The 2019 Nordic conference will take place in Copenhagen in June 27-28, organized by University of Copenhagen and the Danish Association for development research. Call for papers will be launched in short time. The 2020 NFU conference by NFU is a joint conference with a partner (TBC). The 2021 Nordic conference will take place in Finland.

The permanent panels from 2016-2018 have been “Asian Transformations: Theories, Challenges, Opportunities”, “Food in a changing world”, “Power, Resistance, and Development in the Global South” and “What Works in Development?”. For more about the previous panels, please visit The panels have worked very well and provided a continuum in topical and scholarly interest. We would encourage all research environments, also those who have organized the permanent panels since 2016, to submit a proposal.

Please submit a brief concept note (150 words) on proposal for permanent panels. Up to four panels for a period of three years will be approved by the NFU board.

Please submit the proposal to (NFU Chair) within January 20, 2019, with copy to

NFU cordially invite all members to the General Assembly 2018, November 8

Dear NFU members,

We wish to welcome you for the annual general assembly meeting on the 8th November in connection to the VID/NFU seminar: “The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the Critical Role of Development Research”

We will meet right after the conference program finishes, at 5 pm, Diakonveien 14, room AU 17. Please find the tentative program below.

With falling membership numbers and limited funding opportunities for development research, we invite you all especially to contribute to the debate on discussing the future of NFU and partners in light of these difficulties and hopefully find good solutions to many more years of support to development-related networks and research communication.

Tentative program:

1. Constitute meeting and approve agenda

  • Election of General Assembly Chair and two reporters
  • Approval of agenda

2. NFU Annual Report 2018
3. Annual plan and budget for 2019
4. Board changes
5. Debate: What is the future of NFU?
6. Incoming business


Randi Solhjell
Chair, NFU
+4799233831 /

The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the Critical Role of Development Research, 8 November 2018 in Oslo

Together with VID Specialized University, we have the pleasure of inviting you to the NFU seminar “The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the Critical Role of Development Research” 8 November 2018 in Oslo.

The seminar combines panel and workshop sessions in order to provide debates as well as presentation and feedback on your research in smaller workshop groups. Here is the link to the updated seminar program and registration:
(For registration, click the “påmelding”-button).

The deadline for submitting a paper is October 25th, 2018.

Note that the NFU seminar is also the “fagdag” for the Justice Conference Norway, that will take place on November 9 (at Sentralen). Those who want to register for both November 8 and 9 – OR for the whole 5 ECTS course at VID  ( have to register before November 1st. Submissions of abstracts has an extended deadline: October 25th!

Here is a link to the Facebook event: Please help spread the invitation!

The location of the seminar will take place at VID, Diakonveien 14 ( 

We hope to see many of you there!

The seminar is organized by:






The seminar is the “fagdag” of Justice Conference Norway, which takes place November 9 (