Civic Innovation PhD supervision

We welcome applications from PhD candidates interested in conducting research in line with the subject areas covered by the Civic Innovation research group.

Take a look at the type of research conducted by our faculty and the PhD supervisions they are interested in. More information about the ISS PhD programme and how to apply can be found on the ISS PhD Programme page.

dr. (Sylvia) SI Bergh

I welcome PhD projects that deal with local (rural) governance issues such as participatory development programs in a decentralising context, state-society relations and public service provision at the local level, as well as social accountability issues, especially in the Middle East and North Africa region, including in the context of the ‘Arab Spring’. I also welcome projects researching gender questions and local development, such as gender-responsive budgeting initiatives.

I am supervising research in the broad field of urban development, poverty and social protection. In the context of Civic Innovation, I welcome PhD projects concerned with slum dwellers’ struggles for shelter, livelihoods and empowerment, and in particular the poor’s micro-enterprises.

(Kristen) KE Cheney

I welcome PhD supervisions to do with children, adolescents, and youth in development, particularly those dealing with the political economy of childhood, child protection, and sexual and reproductive health. I am also keen to guide PhD candidates in participatory methods and co-production of knowledge with young people. Finally, I am interested in working with PhD candidates researching ARTs and reproductive justice issues. 

dr. (Georgina) GM Gomez

I am fascinated by the diversity of forms of organizing local economic schemes. My interests focus on patterns of collaboration and competition around the configuration of money, markets and enterprises. My research covers complementary currency systems, local markets, local production systems and social economy organisations. I consider these are niches for learning-by-doing and experimenting with alternative economic activities that may later expand or contest the capitalist system at large. I approach these topics from a historical and institutional perspective, because I consider institutions are the most essential brick in the structuring of socio- economic life.

I welcome PhD projects that deal with organization and transformation of exchange systems at the local level, particularly money, markets, and new forms of entrepreneurship. It may include topics on market-making, like creating a complementary currency, engineering a new local market, re-coordinating a value chain or a local system of production, forming producers' associations, and so on.

prof.dr. (Wendy) W Harcourt

I welcome PhD candidates in the field of feminist engagements in diverse social justice movements, explorations of the nexus among global, feminism ecology and critical development studies.

I have successfully supervised 15 PhD candidates and I am currently supervising 10 PhD projects. The latter concern long term evolutionary studies on local institutions; SMEs and entrepreneurial responsibility; value chain development in post-conflict areas; value chains and (co-)innovation; role of local governments in basic services and in local economic development, role of NGOs and social entrepreneurs in local development.

dr. (Silke) S Heumann

I welcome PhD students interested in doing research on social movements, politics (both state politics as well as everyday politics) and gender and sexuality (i. e. sex work/ migration and ‘trafficking’, sexual and reproductive health and rights, gender-based violence; religion and sexuality).

dr. (Rosalba) RA Icaza Garza

I very much welcome candidates who are interested in exploring the ways in which social struggles contribute to a continuous questioning of the meaning and practice of ‘international development’.

I welcome PhD proposals on the developmental implications of private sector activities, such as: value chain analysis and private governance, role of social standards and codes of conduct; fair trade, ethical trade, and Corporate Social Responsibility; frugal innovation; new middle class consumers in the Global South; informal sector entrepreneurs, survival business and graduation.

I lived for the most part of my life in India and my academic research interests have been deeply linked to my activism. I am interested in working with students on projects that challenge and seek to unlearn existing Eurocentric and neo-colonial knowledge production in the social sciences.

In the past, I have been involved in struggles for the rights of women, landless communities, workers and slum dwellers. I have engaged with issues pertaining to caste politics, indigenous land rights, capitalist globalization, and civil and democratic rights in South Asia. I have taught specifically on feminist critiques of development, women in precarious work in the global south, women social welfare workers in South Asia, feminist research methodologies and epistemologies, social movements in the global south, caste politics in India and South Asia, and the Kerala Model of Development. 

Much of my thinking and my theoretical and conceptual tools I use in research are influenced by socialist and decolonial feminist literature. I would like to work together with my students toward incorporating activist-produced knowledge rooted in the subaltern global south.

I welcome proposals from prospective candidates for PhD or Post-doctoral research who are interested in any of the broad areas of research mentioned above and are passionate about progressive thinking and developing transformative epistemologies and methodologies.

dr. (Lee) LJ Pegler

I have supervised, co-supervised and examined PhD candidates on themes such as CSR (1), Labour in Global Value Chains (2) and enterprise learning (1). I could do likewise on such themes and those noted in 2) above again. More broadly, I could be called on for most themes with a focus on labour, skills, capability and work issues, value chains, representation and human (in)security.

Topically, I welcome PhD supervisions that aim to understand how precarious workers challenge and change the social, economic and political structures that marginalize labour. Methodologically, I encourage PhD students to conduct research jointly with actors who have a direct stake in progressive social change. This is based on the assumption that academia can make an important societal contribution, especially if the ways in which knowledge itself is produced embody alternatives to the status quo. Geographically, the focus of my work has been South Asia, Pakistan in particular.

I am a pluralist economist. I work in the perspectives of social economics, institutional economics, Post Keynesian economics and feminist economics. I welcome research proposals in either of these schools of thought, preferably with a combination of quantitative and qualitative methods. I am interested in both macro and micro economics. I have no preference for a particular region of the world.