Policy & Practice - A Development Education Review



Submission Guidelines


ISSN: 2053-4272

Issue 39 Call for Contributors

Development Education Silences


  • Deadline for abstract submissions is Friday. 19 April 2024

  • Deadline for article submissions is Friday, 5 July 2024

  • Publication date is Autumn 2024

  • Download abstract submission form


Policy and Practice is a peer reviewed, bi-annual, open access journal published by the Centre for Global Education, a non-governmental development organisation based in Belfast.  First published in 2005, Policy and Practice aims to provide a space for development education (DE) practitioners to critically reflect on their practice, discuss the main challenges faced by the sector and debate new policy developments.  Development education uses an active learning, participative approach to education that addresses the root causes of poverty and injustice and seeks to enable learners to take action toward positive social change.  It draws upon Paulo Freire's concept of praxis that combines reflection and action to support a meaningful intervention in reality.   Policy and Practice aims to: share new research in development education; celebrate and promote good practice in DE; enhance collaboration between development education and related adjectival education sectors; further mainstream development education within the statutory education sector in Ireland; and provide opportunities for exchange and debate between educators from the global North and South.

Policy and Practice has a designated website (www.developmenteducationreview.com) which contains an archive of all previous 36 issues which are available for viewing online and for downloading.  The journal is listed on Scopus (H-Index 2) and the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ).  In 2022, the Policy and Practice web site received 173,567 unique visits from countries in the global North and South.  Policy and Practice articles have generated 4,225 citations that have appeared in 619 journals, 341 books and 415 dissertations.


The Centre for Global Education is inviting contributions to Issue 39 of our bi-annual, peer reviewed, open access journal Policy and Practice: A Development Education Review on the theme: Development Education Silences.   As a journal inspired by the pedagogy of Paulo Freire and committed to his values of social justice, solidarity and transformation, we understand development education to be consciously political and committed to authentic struggle in solidarity with the oppressed wherever they may be in the global North and South.  Freire’s radical vision of education does not objectify the oppressed or remain distant from them but rather requires that one ‘enter into the situation of those with whom one is solidary’.  ‘To surmount the situation of oppression’, argued Freire, ‘people must critically recognize its causes’.  Addressing the root causes of injustice, poverty and inequality is therefore central to development education policy and practice.  Issue 39 of Policy and Practice reflects on the extent to which the Freirean mission of development education – to explore root causes, reflect and act -  has been applied to the complex and multiple challenges represented by current local and global concerns.  In particular, concerned by the growing silences that appear to have enveloped the sector in the context of the grave and multiple crises that have and continue to shape our world, it aims at naming and unpacking these silences while focusing on the modalities and influences in development education policy and practice that promote and / or confront them.

This call for articles coincides with a three month Israeli attack on Gaza which followed the deliberate killing, injuring and kidnapping of 1,200 civilians by Hamas in southern Israel on 7 October.   Nearly 30,000 Palestinians, 70 per cent of whom are women and children, have been killed in Gaza with the United Nations human rights chief, Craig Mokhiber, describing Israel’s ‘systematic persecution and purging’ of the Palestinian people as ‘a textbook case of genocide’.  He resigned from his post in protest.  ‘Turning a critical eye on the violence waged by Israel on Gaza is crucial’, wrote Henry Giroux, ‘especially at a time when such violence may be in violation of international law’.  This critical eye appears to be absent from the development education sector’s response to the crisis when it could lend context to the conflict by sharing with learners and partners, the historical origins and daily injustices that are underpinning it.  The sector has also been largely silent on what has arguably been the ideology at the root of all our problems over the past fifty years: neoliberal economics.  A report published in 2022 by Centre for Global Education and Financial Justice Ireland found that ‘neither the international development nor the development education sector give anywhere near adequate attention to explorations with the public of the economic causes of poverty, inequality and injustice and of responses, through education, to the global neoliberal system’.  Why are these sectors silent on this most crucial of issues?

There has similarly been a lack of discourse in the sector on the ineffective global governance to address the existential global climate emergency, particularly in the wake of the disappointing outcomes of Cop28 held in Dubai.  And growing unease has been expressed at the reluctance of the international development sector in Ireland to take a stand on the issue of corporate arts and sports washing, particularly by oil and gas companies when it has become essential to leave fossil fuels in the ground if carbon emission targets agreed in the legally binding Paris Climate Agreement are to be met.  Similar concerns have been raised about the neoliberal ‘takeover of education from a democratically controlled system to one designed and run by corporations in service of the global economy’.  In a similar vein, global corporations are part of the UN Global Compact and partners in the delivery of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).  Has the development education sector critically assessed the implications of corporate sponsorship of the Goals and their sustainability as a public good?  To what extent are the Goals complicit with the neoliberal system that underpins the problems which the Goals were designed to address? 

One of the more sinister out-workings of neoliberalism has been emboldening the far-right in Ireland and across the world with increased mobilization online and racialized violence on the streets.  The extreme poverty and economic polarization created by a chaotic neoliberal system has led to disconnection with mainstream politics and misplaced anger often directed at migrants.   As Henry Giroux argues, ‘It is hard to imagine a more urgent moment for taking seriously Paulo Freire’s ongoing attempts to make education central to politics’.  Yet, this appears to be the moment that the development education sector has backed away from these critical questions which have been mostly met by silences. 

This issue of Policy and Practice provides a critical but safe space for practitioners to reflect on the factors that may be limiting discourse, practice and participation in the key debates and actions that demand our attention and activism.  Whilst recognising that development education is a small sub-sector within international development with limited capacity for action and learning, it is also a sector that has considerable expertise in a range of educational settings and networked with civil society organisations across the world.  The potential for effective action and social change can be unlocked if silences are filled by reflective actions.   Among the questions that contributors to Issue 39 could consider are the following:

  • What are the factors underpinning the silences in development education on key issues such as neoliberalism, the climate emergency and the rise of the far-right? 
  • To what extent does development education policy and practice implement Freire’s radical and transformative vision of education?
  • Is the development education sector ‘entering into solidarity’ with Palestinians in Gaza and the occupied West Bank subjected to Israel’s settler colonialism and asymmetrical violence?
  • What are the modalities in development education policy and practice that may hamper a more fulsome contribution to key development issues?  For example, short-term financing, over-dependence on a small number of financial sources, lack of research funding etc.
  • To what extent are the SDGs complicit with the neoliberal agenda, and compromised by corporate sponsorship?  What are the implications of this compromise for development education policy and practice?
  • How can development educators take up the tensions, complexities and contradictions of the multiple global crises we are facing?
  • How can development educators be supported to incorporate controversial issues into their practice without becoming vulnerable outliers? 
  • How can the development education sector at national network and policy level accommodate effective action on local development issues?  For example, the Direct Provision system in Ireland; far-right attacks on migrants and refugees; increasing poverty levels in Ireland.
  • What innovative development education approaches to issues such as neoliberalism and the rise of the far-right can the sector draw upon to support its practice? 

Authors interested in submitting an article to Issue 39 should send a completed abstract submission form to journal editor, Stephen McCloskey, by Friday, 19 April 2024.  Please email: stephen@centreforglobaleducation.com.  The submission date for commissioned articles is Friday, 5 July 2024.  

Article Types

There are four kinds of article published in Policy and Practice

  • Focus articles are peer reviewed, between 5,000 and 6,000 words, and should have a strong critical and theoretical analysis of their topic. 
  • Perspectives articles which are 3,000 – 5,000 words in length and more descriptive, addressing an aspect of development education practice. 
  • Viewpoint articles which are 2,000 – 4,000 words in length and opinion pieces on burning issues related to DE policy and practice. 
  • Review articles are 1,000-2,000 words in length and offer an opinion of a new book, film, teaching resource or online site on development issues. 

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Policy and Practice is funded by Irish Aid.

This document has been published as part of a development education project funded by Irish Aid at the Department of Foreign Affairs. Irish Aid is the Government’s overseas development programme which supports partners working in some of the world’s poorest countries. Irish Aid also supports global citizenship and development education in Ireland to encourage learning and public engagement with global issues. The ideas, opinions and comments herein are entirely the responsibility of the Centre for Global Education and do not necessarily represent or reflect DFA policy

For further information contact:
Stephen McCloskey
Centre for Global Education
9 University Street
Belfast BT7 1FY
Tel: (0044) 2890 241879

E-mail: stephen@centreforglobaleducation.com
Web: www.centreforglobaleducation.com 
Facebook: www.facebook.com/centreforglobaleducation

X: @GCEDevEdReview


March 2024