YSS-60806 Cutting Edge Issues in Development and Rural Innovation


Studiepunten 6.00

Field practical80
Group work10
Course coordinator(s)dr. ir. H Maat
dr. R Fletcher
Lecturer(s)dr. ir. SR Vellema
dr. ir. H Maat
dr. ir. PA de Vries
dr. R Fletcher
Examiner(s)dr. ir. H Maat
dr. R Fletcher

Language of instruction:


Mandatory knowledge:

CPT-21304 Introduction to Technology, Agro-ecology and Development M; CPT-23804 Introduction to Communication and Innovation Studies M; SDC-21804 Introduction to the Sociology of Development, Knowledge and Change M.

Assumed knowledge on:

YRM-20806 Research Design & Research Methods.


This course provides insights and hands-on exercises for becoming an academic professional working on short-term commissioned jobs in the field of development and rural innovation. This requires a capacity to reflect on and anticipating new developments in the field and become a flexible and critically engaged academically trained expert. This course focuses on those capacities. Students become responsible for their own learning process, stimulating ownership and responsibility for completion of a commissioned assignment on an academic level with practical implications. The course offers students the opportunity to deepen and apply their knowledge acquired from previous courses. A major activity of the course is a field research practical abroad where students work in small groups on the commissioned assignment.

Cutting Edge Issues, together with the course Facilitating Interactive Processes (CPT-60306), forms the Academic Master Cluster (AMC) for the MDR programme.

Learning outcomes:

After successful completion of this course students are expected to be able to:
- assess the state of knowledge of topical issues and socio-technical change in emerging complex problems in the field of development and rural innovation, using information technology and collective primary data collection;
- conduct, within limited time and space, an integrated socio-technical analysis of a changing practice;
- define and prioritize lines for further analytical action and design one or more solutions ;
- apply social science perspectives and theories to a practical situation, using cognitive skills at an academic level ;
- interact professionally with a commissioner, and work in a demand-driven fashion without sacrificing a critical academic stance and ethical standards;
- work in a complex project environment, arriving at an effective task division and group working procedures;
- transform research findings into concrete and feasible practical recommendations;
- implement reflexive learning by assessing their own performance and contribution to a professional team as well as an assessment of the contribution of other team members.


Student group work; Literature retrieval; A multiple days' field research practical abroad is part of the activities. Students write and present a report and engage in any other activity required to achieve their learning goals.


Assessment of the quality of the end product (75%). A peer review of activities and output (15%). An assessment of the group collaboration process and outcomes (10%). Each component needs a minimum mark of 5.5 to pass.


As to the contents, student will collect relevant reading material themselves on the topic of their choice.

Verplicht voor: MDRDevelopment and Rural InnovationMSc4WD+5WD+6WD