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What is development management?


  • Alan Thomas

    (Technology Faculty, Open University, Milton Keynes, UK)


What is distinctive about development management? This paper first discusses different views of development and management separately, and goes on to characterize development management both as management in the context of development as a long-term historical process and as the management of deliberate efforts at progress by means of intervention in the social change process on the part of a variety of agencies. Thus development management should be thought of in terms of process and is distinctive in aiming at social goals external to any particular organization in the context of value-based conflicts. The paper concludes with a list of conceptual and skill areas which this view implies are important to development management as a new academic and professional field.

Suggested Citation

  • Alan Thomas, 1996. "What is development management?," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 8(1), pages 95-110.
  • Handle: RePEc:wly:jintdv:v:8:y:1996:i:1:p:95-110
    DOI: 10.1002/(SICI)1099-1328(199601)8:1<95::AID-JID348>3.0.CO;2-B

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    Cited by:

    1. Chris Mowles, 2007. "Promises of transformation: just how different are international development NGOs?," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 19(3), pages 401-411.
    2. Cooke, Bill, 2001. "From Colonial Administration to Development Management," General Discussion Papers 30562, University of Manchester, Institute for Development Policy and Management (IDPM).
    3. Gulrajani, Nilima, 2009. "The future of development management: examining possibilities and potential," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 24206, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    4. Dina Abbott & Suzanne Brown & Gordon Wilson, 2007. "Development management as reflective practice," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 19(2), pages 187-203.
    5. Rossignoli, Serena & Coticchia, Fabrizio & Mezzasalma, Annarosa, 2015. "A critical friend: Monitoring and evaluation systems, development cooperation and local government. The case of Tuscany," Evaluation and Program Planning, Elsevier, vol. 50(C), pages 63-76.

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