Global Governance and Human Development GPO4105


Period 4a
Start Date 5 February 2024
End Date 8 March 2024
ECTS credits  4
Instruction language: English
Coordinator Dr. Tatiana Skripka
Teaching methods Assignments; Coaching; Papers; Skills; Work in subgroups
Assessment methods Participation; Assessment; Presentation and Paper; Final Paper
Keywords Global governance; Human development; International organizations; Participation


Full course description

People around the globe are both protagonists and beneficiaries of development-related policy. This first course of the specialisation of Global Governance for Development focuses on the mechanisms enhancing people’s participation and contribution to human development. Participants will adopt the perspective of citizens in development within different global partnership frameworks involving state, regional and local actors. 

The attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) relies on a concerted effort by governments, international organizations, and citizens alike. Global governance institutions are key to fostering the development of human potential and equality.  At the same time, local knowledge and individual initiative are essential for informing and supporting the SDG agenda. This course explores the constitutive role of international institutions as well as individuals in supporting human development in the context of the SDGs. It studies the opportunities, crises, and challenges to successful partnerships for human development. In doing so, the course is organised in several modules, each of which combines an analytical perspective with  relevant skills training.

Week one will introduce the global governance system and its role in addressing development objectives. It will examine how human rights treaties address the concept of human development, and the responsibilities international organisations, governments, and citizens have in addressing human development. Several professional skills workshops will take place in the first two weeks of the course. Two workshops on international negotiations will equip students with the skills crucial for policy cooperation in a global multi-stakeholder context. A workshop on policy brief writing will offer practical tools for preparing background briefs. In the following weeks, students will put their newly acquired skills to a practical test in a series of mini-simulations of international negotiations in the context of global partnerships for development, which will be embedded in tutorial sessions.

In weeks two and three, the focus will shift to the topic of participatory global governance. This module will examine the role played by citizens and other non-states actors in the existing global, international, and transnational frameworks fostering human development in the context of the SDGs. Lectures will introduce a political perspective on human development and inclusive global governance whilst tutorials will take a case-study approach to investigating the role of citizens in the global development agenda and transnational partnerships for human development.

In week four, the course will explore some of the key pressures on the human development agenda which constrain the ability of international organizations as well as citizens to support the SDGs. Lectures will introduce some of the key challenges, including contested narratives on global development and undemocratic movements, and the concluding tutorials will bring together analytical considerations and insights from the negotiations and case study exercises.

Course objectives

  • Identify relevant global governance organisations and transnational efforts to address human development in the context of the SDGs and assess their participatory dimension
  • Use appropriate analytical and policy tools to explain, assess and design multi-stakeholder efforts to support human development in times of crises
  • Develop, plan, execute and reflect on the application of tailor-made negotiation strategies in an international environment
  • Find and use open source information to develop policy positions and prepare effective policy memoranda


Staff (tentative)

Teaching staff: Tatiana Skripka, Victor Osei Kwadwo, Michal Natorski (all Maastricht University/UNU-MERIT), Alexandra Ivanovic (UNU Tokyo)



Recommended reading

A reader will be prepared with the literature relevant for each class.

General literature:

Browne, Stephen and Thomas G. Weiss (eds.) (2021) Routledge Handbook on the UN and Development, Routledge.

Nelson, Paul (2021) Global Development and Human Rights: The Sustainable Development Goals and Beyond, University of Toronto Press.

Ponzio, Richard and Arunabha Ghosh (2016) Human Development and Global Institutions: Evolution, Impact, Reform, Routledge.

United Nations (2022) The SDG Partnership Guidebook: A Practical Guide to Building High Impact Multi-stakeholder Partnerships for the Sustainable Development Goals, United Nations.

Additional recommended readings for each lecture will be reported in the course manual.