My research focusses on practical Postdevelopment, social movements and resistances, as well as decolonial approaches to knowledge production and pedagogy. I am particularly interested in the (asymmetric) relations in which knowledge is generated and struggle to critically interrogate and explore what is needed for scholars to contribute to truly transformative and pluriversal processes in knowledge production, dissemination, policy and practice.


Current projects and collaborations


Towards a Reinvention of Development Theory: Theorizing Post-Development (with Prof Aram Ziai, University of Kassel)

As post-doctoral researcher in the DFG-funded project “Towards a Reinvention of Development Theory: Theorizing Post-Development”, I am exploring the various theoretical groundings of Post-Development theory. The project departs from a position of skeptical Postdevelopment (in opposition to its neo-populist variant) taking into account Eurocentrism, (epistemic) power assymetries and colonial legacies, while at the same time acknowledging need and desire for greater global material equality and the mitigation of structural injustices on local, national, regional and global levels.

Action Chair of COST Action CA19129 – Decolonising Development: Research, Teaching and Practice

I am leading the EU COST Action CA19129 – Decolonising Development: Research, Teaching and Practice. The Action consists of more than 200 scholars and researchers from 29 different countries, who are coming together in a broad range of activities to network and collaborate. The Action DecolDEV takes on the challenge to reconstruct the concept and practice of development after its deconstruction. It aims for a resetting and diversification of the actors, structures, institutions and spaces in which knowledge about and for development is produced, shared, contested and put into practice. The Action will progress beyond the state-of-the-art through exploring and formulating alternatives in three areas: Research, Teaching and Practice.

Bridging EU Studies and Postdevelopment (with Prof Dr Jan Orbie Centre for EU Studies (CEUS), Ghent University, Belgium)

Although much research on the EU as a ‘development’ actor can be considered ‘critical’ towards the EU’s policies and approaches, Postdevelopment and decolonial debates have remained off the radar in debating the EU’s global role. In line with Manners & Whitman’s call (2016) for more dissident voices in theorising Europe, this collaboration seeks to explore how Postdevelopment approaches can inform, infuse and potentially transform the study of EU (development) policies and relationships with the Global South. One outcome of the collaboration is a blog series on EU and Postdevelopment.

Intercultural Philosophy and Critical Development Theory in Dialogue (with Prof DDr Franz Gmainer-Pranzl)

As cooperative member of the Centre for Intercultural Theology and Study of Religions at Paris Lodron University Salzburg I am collaborating on a dialogue between intercultural philosophy and critical development theory. We assert that this dialogue is overdue and can enrich both disciplines: intercultural philosophy, through confrontation with research of social and political sciences and economics, can gain a stronger empirical basis towards global challenges, whereas (critical) development theory will be able to more clearly acknowledge philosophical preconditions of particular concepts of politics and globalization. One specific outcome is Issue 44 of „POLYLOG. ZEITSCHRIFT FÜR INTERKULTURELLES PHILOSOPHIEREN”.

Global Partnership Network – Cluster 3: Par­t­­nership in kno­w­­ledge pro­­­duc­­ti­on: Eu­­ro­­cen­­trism and al­­ter­­na­­ti­­ve kno­w­­ledge

From the GPN website: “The Global Partnership Network (GPN) is an ambitious and promising assemblage of higher education institutions and civil society groups for research, teaching and training around SDG 17. The GPN targets research, teaching and training that investigates the global partnership for sustainable development in three specific areas, challenges its shortcomings and contributes to possible solutions to the concerns posed providing policy-relevant research informed by a historical sensibility. These areas are: 1) partnerships in development cooperation, 2) partnerships in the global economy, 3) partnership in knowledge production.”


Previous work


Making Development Political: Non-Governmental Organisations as Agents for Alternatives to Development

“Development has failed”. Departing from this Postdevelopment claim, the project traced how existent and perceived rules and restrictions of the global development system work in maintaining inequalities between international non-governmental organisations (INGOs) and Haitian organisations. To counter these structures, I propose a “development-as-politics”, in which local and international actors engage in selective, political interaction. Findings of the project may provide the starting point for practical postdevelopment alternatives that account for the voices of the subaltern and enable international NGOs to assume a role that supports rather than weakens local capacities.