Development Policy and Practice is The Open University’s centre for teaching and research in international development. We are a major contributor to ID@OU, the OU’s international development activity, which brings together research, teaching and outreach programmes from across the university.

DPP challenges traditional thinking about international development – what it is, who drives it, and where it happens – to help create more effective interventions. We are driven by a desire to generate improvements in the lives and prospects of people across the globe and work collaboratively across disciplines, institutions and with northern and southern partners.

Our mission is to sustain a globally leading and distinctive analysis of:

  • The economic, social and political significance in sub-Saharan Africa of the southern rising powers, notably China, India and Brazil.
  • The drivers of pro-poor innovation – with a view to identifying new, more inclusive, growth paths to meet the needs of low-income economies.
  • The international and national political and social processes that enable knowledge, capabilities and creativities to be harnessed for global social justice.

Who we are

Our members combine diverse interests and expertise – from social science through to science and technology – with a wide range of research and practical experience gained across the world. Read more about our members. 

We also work closely with the Institute for Innovation Generation in the Life Sciences (Innogen). Renowned for its world-leading research on the social and economic aspects of the life sciences and emerging technologies, the Innogen Institute is a dynamic collaboration between the Open University and the University of Edinburgh. Its findings have influenced global decision-makers in areas such as food and energy security, health, and development and innovation systems.


DPP also provided wide and diverse learning platforms which helped me expand my academic base and research skills.

Zef Teka