World Development Studies

Lam Family College of Business

Dean: Dr. Eugene Sivadas

World Development Studies Program

HSS Building, Room 140
(415) 338-2108
Coordinator: Anoshua Chaudhuri, Professor of Economics

Program Scope

The field of world development studies looks at the comprehensive transformations that have been brought to human societies across the globe by the spread of the industrial revolution. Approximately one-third of the world's population enjoys a higher material standard of living due to industrialization, whereas two-thirds are in relative poverty. The likelihood, means, and consequences of closing this gap provide the central foci of world development studies. Since this social transformation affects all aspects of human existence, all of the social science disciplines devote important efforts to understanding it.

Issues Central to World Development Studies

  • How did the world distribution of income and wealth become so unequal and will or must it stay that way?
  • Can economic development occur in a non-Western way?
  • What is the role of grassroots organizations and movements in social change?
  • In development strategy, how much market and how much planning?
  • How does the development process impact women differently than men?
  • Are industrialization and environmental health compatible?
  • Is economic development necessarily associated with democracy?
  • What does global change do to existing cultures and psyches?

Career Outlook

Though the minor is not intended as complete career preparation, it certainly serves as an introduction to a growing career field. There are tens of thousands of development professionals working for governments, the United Nations and its affiliated agencies, a multitude of non-governmental organizations, development banks, universities, and private companies around the world. The minor enables the student to discover a major field of employment as well as scholarly activity.


Sanjoy Banerjee (1990), Professor in International Relations. Ph.D. Yale University.

Anoshua Chaudhuri (2003), Professor in Economics. Ph.D. University of Washington.

World Development Studies Minor — 22 – 28 units

All courses must be approved by a faculty advisor, who should be contacted as soon as a student decides to declare the minor. All student's programs must include courses with at least three different departmental prefixes.  Substitutions are possible with an advisor's approval.

A minimum of 6 upper-division units are required to complete the minor.

All coursework used to satisfy the requirements of the minor must be completed with a minimum grade point average of 2.0.

Historical Background (3-4 units)

Select One:

AFRS 302Black Diaspora3
HIST 358/ANTH 501/LTNS 501Latin America: The National Period3
HIST 398History of Modern European Imperialism3

The Global Development Era (3 – 4 units)

Select One:

ECON 620Economic Development3
I R 540Rich and Poor Nations: Legacies of Slavery and Colonialism4

Development and the Environment (3 – 4 units)

Select One:

ECON 550Environmental Economics3
GEOG 427Agriculture and Food Supply4
I R 331Global Environmental Crisis4
SOC 483Global Sociology4

Cultural, Ethnic, and Gender Perspectives (3 – 4 units)

Select One:

AFRS 335The Black Woman: A Cultural Analysis3
ANTH 321Endangered Cultures3
I R/PLSI 544Women in the World4
LTNS 350Gender and Latina/x Feminisms3
SOC 461Ethnic Relations: International Comparisons4

Regional Comparisons (6 – 8 units)

Select two different regions:

ANTH 315Regional Ethnography3
HIST 368Modern Africa3
I R/PLSI 321Development and Foreign Policy: Africa4
I R/PLSI 322Policy Analysis: The Latin American Cases4
I R 324Middle East and North Africa in International Relations4
LTNS 460Central Americans of the U.S.: History and Heritage3
PLSI/I R 412South Asian Politics4
PLSI/I R 416Ethnicity and Nationalism4

Electives (3 – 4 units)

Select one of the following or from courses in the above categories not chosen to fulfill a requirement within student's program:

ANTH/CST 320Racism: Cross-Cultural Analysis3
ANTH/CST 585Globalization and World Cultures3
CINE 308Third Cinema3
GEOG 425Economic Geography3
HIST 353History of Mexico3
HIST 362History of Modern China3
IBUS 592Doing Business in Greater China3
I R/PLSI 325Chinese Foreign Policy4
I R 334International Organizations: New World Order4
I R 446The Multinational Corporation in World Affairs4
LTNS/HIST 278History of Latinos in the U.S.3
PSY 455Cross-Cultural Perspectives in Psychology3

Holistic Perspective: Special Study (1 unit)

A special study from the student's advisor's home department (ANTH 699, ECON 699, etc.)