SOC41120 Developmental Challenges in the Global South

Academic Year 2023/2024

The world around us is fast changing, and every society faces multiple naturally induced and human-made critical challenges it must grapple with. While some of these issues are agelong, others, such as the COVID-19 pandemic, are recent. In this module, we will critically examine and analyze the dynamics of the challenges facing the Global South (GS) in light of the changing world and innovative ways of developing context-specific yet globally relevant solutions to tackle them. We will explore relevant and contemporary cultural, environmental, health, political, and socioeconomic topics under two interrelated parts. The first part will investigate disease outbreaks (for example, COVID-19 and vaccine capitalism), commercial and political determinants of health and policy, crime, corruption and their effects on development, and planetary health and activism. Among other topics, the second part will explore organized crime, corruption, migration, and terrorism, how they affect human development in the Global South, and strategies to initiate behaviour change.

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Curricular information is subject to change

Learning Outcomes:

By the end of the Module, students should be able to:
1. Critically understand, appraise and explain diverse (environmental, health, political, socioeconomic, etc.) challenges facing the Global South and their connections with the Global North.
2. Students should be able to identify the source(s) of these challenges and the extent to which they affect each continent or country.
3. Students will develop the necessary critical academic and analytical skills required to recommend policies and proffer lasting and valuable solutions to the challenges of the GS.
4. Appraise the workability of the solutions to (economic, environmental, health, and socio-political) the challenges facing the South and the transferability of such solutions to the Global North.

Indicative Module Content:

In this module, we will explore the following topics:
- Introduction to Global Challenges (with emphasis on the South).
- Specific Developmental Challenges facing the Global South (GS). For example, health:
• Special topics we will consider include – Disease outbreaks and pandemics such as the COVID-19 and Ebola. We will also consider sociocultural issues relating to gender inequality, like female genital mutilation (FGM).
• Vaccine capitalism, inequality, vaccine resistance, etc.
- Commercial and Political Determinants of Health in GS
- Social Determinants of Health Inequality
- Environmental/Planetary Health: Climate Change and Activism
- Corruption and Underdevelopment in GS
- Conflict, Violence, and War in GS
- Migration, Activism, and Policies in GS
• We we answer the questions: what is the major cause(s) of migration in GS, and what are the effects on both GlS and North)? How do we proffer useful solutions to both the GN and GS?
- International Organized Crime in the GS and Implications for Development
• Illegal mining of natural resources as an organized crime
• Terrorism networks
• Drug Trafficking, amongst other challenges.
• Students will be able to understand the social process and practices of organized crime, the systemic network of operation of crime syndicates, and how their activities affect human development).
• What are the solutions to these challenges?

Student Effort Hours: 
Student Effort Type Hours




Approaches to Teaching and Learning:
We will approach this module using a number of methods, such as lectures and seminars. Efforts will be made to provide relevant materials, and students will be expected to actively participate in various ways throughout the term through interactive sessions. 
Requirements, Exclusions and Recommendations

Not applicable to this module.

Module Requisites and Incompatibles
Not applicable to this module.
Assessment Strategy  
Description Timing Open Book Exam Component Scale Must Pass Component % of Final Grade
Journal: Students will participate in a reflection exercise and share how their learning experiences developed in the course and to what extent they are equipped to provide solutions to global challenges. End of trimester MCQ n/a Graded No


Project: Students will prepare a case study on any challenges facing a country or continent in the Global South using one of the following formats: essay, infographic or PowerPoint. End of trimester MCQ n/a Graded Yes


Carry forward of passed components
Resit In Terminal Exam
Spring No
Please see Student Jargon Buster for more information about remediation types and timing. 
Feedback Strategy/Strategies

• Feedback individually to students, post-assessment
• Online automated feedback

How will my Feedback be Delivered?

Not yet recorded.

Timetabling information is displayed only for guidance purposes, relates to the current Academic Year only and is subject to change.
Lecture Offering 1 Week(s) - 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 9, 10, 11, 12 Tues 13:00 - 14:50