Third World Development

AUOL’s Third World Development program is offered at the BA, MA & PhD levels.

The objective of the program is to get you to understand current stereotypes about poverty, colonialism, dependency, development, foreign investment, migration, urban development and globalisation.

The program offers wide ranging opportunities in the social sciences, NGOs, research and development, academia, business and social and educational developments in the Third World.

Most of the world’s people live in Africa, Asia and Latin America. These continents contain most of the world’s poorest countries. Unfortunately, the geographical literature tends to ignore most of these areas or at best treats them superficially.

To most academic geographers, typically working in Europe or North America, these areas do not pose significant intellectual questions. In part this neglect derives from their ignorance of the ‘Third World’; in part it derives from a misplaced belief in the supposed progress that has occurred in the developed world over the last few centuries. Often ‘Third World’ geographers are not much better.

Because of this general neglect, it is essential for all young geographers to be exposed to the problems of the Third World’ and to the body of thinking about poverty and development that has emerged despite the discipline’s unimpressive record in dealing with these regions of the world.

AUOL’s program examines how the poorer countries of the world became poor, to understand the extent of that poverty and to examine some of the common development paths that have been recommended to ‘Third World’ governments over the years. The course will examine the nature and meaning of poverty, the relationship between poverty and external dependency, and the contemporary nature of relationships between developed and less developed countries. Internal characteristics of ‘Third World’ countries will be considered, particularly the shift from agriculture to industry, the migration of millions of people from rural to urban areas, the nature of employment and the predominance of service work, and the quality of urban life.