Policy & Practice - A Development Education Review



Development Education in Politically Interesting Times
Spring 2018

Guest Editorial: Global Learning in a Volatile World

Gerard McCann

International development and development education are facing some of the most serious challenges to confront the sectors in a generation.  With ongoing questions being placed on the legitimacy of democratic processes and policy transparency, and with constant undermining of the core development principle of ‘interdependence’, the theoretical discourse underlying global inter-connectivity has been brought into sharp focus.  Delegitimising the post-war consensus on global partnership, solidarity, integration and harmonisation has become so commonplace across the political establishment and media that, arguably, it threatens the nature of democratic engagement itself.  Re-energised xenophobia, populism, micro-nationalism and economic protectionism have brought forward not only a widespread rejection of internationalisation and interdependence, but this combative political environment has exposed threats to the very concepts of interculturalism, rights, freedom, tolerance and refuge – concepts that are central to the outworking of the international development and development education sectors.

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