Prof. Helen Yanacopulos

Professor of International Politics and Development

Helen received her BA in International Relations from the University of British Columbia. She worked in finance in the corporate and the not-for-profit sectors before returning to complete an MA in Development Studies at the University of East Anglia. Since completing a PhD in Social and Political Sciences at the University of Cambridge in 2000, she has been at the Open University. She has been a consultant for various international organisations, and has acted as Academic Consultant on the BBC productions African School, Syrian School, Comic Relief, the Reith Lectures, as well as the critically acclaimed series ‘Why Poverty?’

 Helen’s research interests bridge the fields of International Politics and International Development and are focused on explanations of how non-state actors influence poverty and inequality.  Specifically, she examines social justice focused and digitally enabled networks of NGOs, social movements and civil society involved in:  political mobilization and political action; global justice networks; transnational governance; and the construction and representation of International Development.  Her most recent book (2016) is International NGO Engagement, Advocacy, Activism.  The Faces and Spaces of Change 

Helen received the ‘Open University’s Teaching Excellence Award’ in 2003.  
She was the Environment, Development and International Studies Programme Director between 2010-2012 and was the Qualification Director for the MSc in Development Management between 2004-2009.  Helen has worked on the following modules:


U208  Third World Development
U213  International Development: challenges for a world in transition
DU301  A World of Whose Making? 
TD223  International Development: Making sense of a changing world


T879     Conflict and Development
T878   Capacities for Managing Development
TU871  Development Context and Practice
TU872  Institutional Development: Conflicts, Values and Meanings
TU874  Development Management Project
TU875  War, Intervention and Development

W822   Business, Human Rights and Corporate Social Responsibility

PhD Supervision
Digital activism
International NGOs and social change
Social media and development
Solidarity based action and social movements
Transnational Advocacy Networks
Conflict and Development

Professsor Helen Yanacopulos

Development Policy and Practice
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
The Open University
Walton Hall
Milton Keynes
United Kingdom

Tel: +44 (0) 1908 654 893
Fax: +44 (0) 1908 654 825
E-mail: Helen Yanacopulos