The Swedish Development Research Network (SweDev) is a member-based network that was constituted in November 2019. The network aims to connect development researchers across Sweden in order to strengthen collaboration within the research community and to increase interaction between development researchers and practitioners. SweDev seeks to support the use of research-based knowledge for efficient policymaking and practice among Swedish actors working for the 2030 Agenda.
SweDev is generously funded by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) and led by a steering committee consisting of representatives from Swedish academic institutions.
Swedish development research – A dispersed research community
Development studies have been part of Swedish academia since the 1960s, yet there has been little coordination and cooperation between institutions. In the past two decades, development research has expanded past the social sciences and into a variety of subject areas such as the natural sciences, health and medicine. While this diversification is positive, it has increased the fragmentation of the research community. Many development researchers work within academic departments unrelated to development research, and as a result, many researchers lack the connection to development research environments and opportunities.
SweDev creates improved multi-disciplinary connections and synergistic effects among Swedish development researchers. SweDev also provides an up-to-date registry of the Swedish development research community. This registry makes researchers more accessible, creates a stronger sense of connection, and enables a platform for collaboration.
Enabling efficient researcher and practitioner collaboration
Through an efficient bridging, SweDev hopes to contribute to the production of relevant and accessible research for decision-makers and practitioners, and to support research-based decision making and practice. Furthermore, SweDev collects evidence and knowledge to identify the obstacles for practitioners to utilize research and interact with the research community. The goal is that SweDev should facilitate and foster continuous and longterm collaboration and communication between researchers, development practitioners and policymakers.
Who is SweDev for?
Membership to the network is open to all development researchers, PhD holders, PhD students and master’s students who are connected to a Swedish research environment. All members have a profile in our registry where their publications, skills and professional experience are featured. While membership is reserved for researchers and master’s students; development practitioners, consultancy agencies, media and other actors are encouraged and welcome to sign up to the SweDev newsletter.
SweDev adopts a general and inclusive definition of development research and welcomes researchers who self-identify as development researchers. This could be researchers focusing on global and sustainable development or researchers concerned only with a specific theme or dimension of development.
SweDev members are invited to attend the bi-annual SweDev Assembly, nominate steering committee members, and consult the steering committee directly with questions or recommendations.