World Population Day

Youth Day in Pyongyang, N Korea © Eleanor Anne Claire Mccall

11 July is World Population Day. This year’s theme is “investing in teenage girls.”

Teenage girls in many regions across the globe face considerable challenges, such as access to education and the opportunity to obtain basic information relating to health and human rights. Too many girls see their prospects harmed by discrimination, exploitation and poverty.

The United Nations Population Fund’s (UNFPA) aim is to empower teenage girls and to give them the necessary tools to initiate positive change in their communities.

“Just when girls should be in school and imagining the possibilities ahead, too many are held back from pursuing their ambitions by social and cultural traps.”

(Secretary-General of the United Nations, Ban Ki-moon)

Of the 1.8 billion young people (aged between 10 and 24 years old) on the planet, almost 1.6 billion live in developing countries. It is vital for the continuing development of these nations that these young people are equipped with the right skills to fulfil their potentials.

Education plays an essential role in the empowerment of young people.

At SOAS University of London, staff within the Department of Development Studies have unrivalled practical and theoretical knowledge of the many branches of enquiry that make up Development Studies, including political economy, globalisation, migration and displacement, conflict, agrarian change, labour movements and political ecology.

Staff from the Department routinely engage in field research, which takes them to places where development policies and approaches touch people’s lives in a direct way.

The BA Development Studies is an undergraduate course, which offers a challenging, multi-disciplinary approach to international development, poverty, and economic and social change in non-western countries.

The course explores key issues in international development such as gender and development; violence and conflict; environment and development; the role of aid and trade in promoting development; and refugees and forced migration.

The course offers the possibility of undertaking an independent study project and the opportunity to specialise through a range of options, including global health; global migration; development practice; and NGOs.

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