Aid Politics and Policy

School: School of Government and Society
International Development Department

Modular value: 20 credits
Module Convenors: Philip Amis and Jonathan Fisher

Aim of the Module

This module is designed to enable students to analyse the rapid changes presently occurring in aid management, particularly with regard to the increased importance of international aid in many countries, recipient country led approaches, aid instruments and the increasingly critical need for skills in team working between donors and governments and among donors.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of the module you will:

Be able to discuss critically the following issues:

  • How international aid is changing
  • Aid’s relation to politics
  • Aid’s relation to public finances
  • Aid’s relation to public services
  • Aid’s relation to economic and social development
  • Aid’s relation to the private sector

Be able to analyse in terms of philosophical and theoretical underpinnings 

Ability to work in multidisciplinary and multicultural teams

Draft quickly and clearly and to present clearly

Teaching and learning approach

The module will be delivered using a range of teaching and learning methods in a highly participatory environment, including interactive lectures, group discussions, student presentations, case studies, videos.

Topics covered include:

  • Nature of development aid, how and why it is changing
  • Reform of aid management
  • Budget support
  • Conditionality
  • Debt reduction
  • Donors and poverty
  • Financial management and aid
  • Evaluating aid
  • Aid and human rights
  • Future of aid


The assessment for the module will consist of two 2,500 word assignments; each assignment is worth 50 percent of the overall module mark (100% total).

Related courses:

The optional modules listed on the website for this programme may unfortunately occasionally be subject to change. As you will appreciate key members of staff may leave the University and this necessitates a review of the modules that are offered. Where the module is no longer available we will let you know as soon as we can and help you make other choices.