London International Development Centre (LIDC)
LIDC (www.lidc.org.uk) tackles international development challenges in pioneering ways by bringing together more than 2,000 social and natural scientists, postgraduate students and alumni from the University of London’s six Bloomsbury Colleges. The specialist Colleges involved in the interdisciplinary initiative are SOAS, Birkbeck, Institute of Education, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, Royal Veterinary College, and The School of Pharmacy.
LIDC aims to:
- Develop high-quality interdisciplinary research between the Colleges and with their research partners
- Develop new and innovative teaching programmes to support development goals
- Inform national and international policies on development through linking research, policy and practice
- Build capacity in low- and middle-income countries to address the needs of higher education and research institutions, NGOs and governments
LIDC brings together groups of researchers from its constituent Colleges through workshops and seminars to catalyse collaboration on new research initiatives. Inter-College working groups are developed around promising research themes. LIDC helps these groups to develop projects and proposals for collaborative research grants and studentships.
As LIDC develops, more and more themes will emerge. Presently, LIDC is developing three interdisciplinary themes with Colleges and partners:
- Emerging and zoonotic disease threats in developing countries
- Improving access to medicines by the poor
- The interaction of agriculture and health in development
Workshops have also been held on the international development aspects of human rights, HIV/AIDS, water, behavioural medicine, corporate governance and ethics, and communications.
SOAS’ participation in LIDC
SOAS’ staff, students and alumni attend and participate in many LIDC events and initiatives, including the Leverhulme Centre for Integrative Research in Agriculture and Health (LCIRAH) – a five-year £3.5m award to LIDC from the Leverhulme Trust to build an Agri-health discipline linking agriculture and health in international development. SOAS’ Centre for Development, Environment and Policy (CeDEP) participates in the Distance Learning for Development (DL4D) programme, and SOAS staff have taken part in a wide range of cross-College workshops. LIDC’s monthly podcast Development Matters is recorded at SOAS Radio, which is based at SOAS.
Postgraduate students and alumni are eligible to apply for the international development and communications internship at LIDC. Many SOAS students and graduates have already completed an LIDC internship.
Every month LIDC sends out a public e-newsletter containing updates and links regarding news and events, including LIDC’s monthly podcast. You can subscribe to the free newsletter online. Film footage of conferences and events is also available on LIDC’s YouTube channel.