African Philosophy

by David Week on 15 February 2016

Yesterday, I listened to an interview with Katrin Flikschuh of the London School of Economics. Brilliant. Wonderful. It was as if a door opened on a new universe. I’ve been working in international development since 1978. In the late 1980s I began to realise that there was something amiss in our standard cultural understanding of […]


“Smart Aid”: A cautionary note

by David Week on 24 November 2010

Thanks to Good Intentions for inspiring this post, which started life as a comment. I have some qualms about the very idea of “smart aid”. It seems to imply that this is something new, while all has been done in the past is “dumb aid”. I think of the development of aid (the development of “development”?) […]


What Tolstoy said to the development worker

by David Week 6 October 2010

Games people play I find two there are two types of commentary on development which I find really push some kind of button with me. Ain’t It Awful The first is “the world is a mess, and it’s only getting worse, and nothing we’re doing is really going to fix it.” In 1964, the psychologist […]

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Poverty is not misery

by David Week 21 September 2010

Many events and situations can make people miserable: natural disasters, in which they lose their homes, livelihoods, and loved ones internment in refugee camps with uncertain futures and time frames conflicts in which they are daily put in fear of their lives. But poverty, in and on of itself, does not cause misery. I met a […]

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What development teaches you about architecture

by David Week 20 September 2010

I recently registered for a new initiative of The Guardian newspaper concerning global development. (Thanks to Craig Zeliger of the Peace and Collaborative Development Network for alerting me to this.) In introducing myself on this site, I felt like saying something about how development has changed the way I understand my profession. I think this is […]

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Is there a “third culture” mindset? (And do we need it?)

by David Week 12 September 2010

Kudos Thanks to Desiree Adaway whose tweet comments on A life without borders prompted this follow-up. Living among worlds For many years, I took the kind of multicultural upbringing I described in A life without borders for granted. About ten years ago, I found the book Third culture kids: the experience of growing up among worlds. The […]

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A life without borders

by David Week 14 August 2010

Snapshot of my life I was born in Chile. At the age of three, I moved two New York for six years (with my parents, of course!). Then six months in Jakarta, just before the 1965 coup which saw between half a million and million people killed. Three and half years in New Zealand. Then back […]

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The trouble with “empowerment”

by David Week 5 August 2010

When I did my PhD, it took me 10 years. Part of the reason for that was just me, and part was the fact that I was working full time in development while doing it. But part of it too was the fact that I radically changed topics mid-stream. I became interested in hermeneutics, which […]

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About “Architecture for Development”

by David Week 27 April 2010

Why this blog Below, I’ve pasted my professional “about” blurb from my CV, written in some version of bureaucratese. It serves as a potted history of my professional life, and provides some insight, I guess, into my professional persona. But I’m not blogging to further my professional career, which is doing just fine. Here are […]

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