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ECO 230 Development Economics: Home

Development Economics

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Course Project Instructions

The purpose of this document is to provide you with guidance as you choose your paper topic.  I may modify these requirements later in the semester. 

Much of this class will focus on how one-size-fits-all development policies do not work.  This project is designed to give you practice in identifying a project that will enhance development.  You will work in groups of 2 and will choose a developing country.  As a group, you will write a 14-17 page paper.  In the paper, you will investigate the kinds of problems faced by the country and will pick a specific problem for which you will devise a development project.  The project should be on a relatively small scale and should not cost more than $1,000,000. 

The idea behind this project is that if you had a few more months, it could actually be implemented.  I will therefore be looking for both a realistic and detailed plan.  I will also be looking for a convincing justification for why the project is needed. 

The project may either be one comprehensive paper or in the form of a report. If it is in the form of a paper, I expect to see clear transitions and a helpful overview.   If the project is in the form of a report, I expect to see separate and clear sections.  Your final product will do the following:

1.       Explain the need for the project you have chosen.  I expect to see at least 4 pages describing why the country AND specific community need the project.  That is, you will identify a specific problem and justify how your plan will help fix it.  I will grade this portion on whether you make a convincing case and on whether you relate your discussion to materials learned in class.  I am looking to see how well you connect your project with global issues.

2.       Devise a plan that would be feasible to implement.  I will grade this section based upon having both a detailed and feasible plan.  I will be looking for a specific location and an analysis of all materials needed.  For example, if you plan to build a school, you will need to describe how many rooms will be built and why.  You will also need to describe how many textbooks, desks, and other materials you will need.  I recommend looking at similar projects in the region to help you decide on these things.

3.       Work out a realistic cost structure for your project (with the sources of all prices included).  Again, if you’re building a school, you will need to find information on the cost of building structures of that kind in your specific community.  I recommend getting most of your materials locally, as this will stimulate business in the community. 

4.       Research possible sources of funding your project.  I recommend finding similar projects in the area and tracking the funding sources.  You do not actually need to ask anyone for money, but you do need to find some source that might convincingly fund your project. 

5.       Provide a methodology to evaluate the success of the project.  How will you know whether the project is a success?  Again, if it’s a school, will you survey teachers?  Students?  Parents?  Will anyone be held accountable for making the school a success?   How will you define success? 

I will grade each of the items above with regard to effective use of sources and quality of writing.

The paper will be typed, double spaced, an 11 point font, and will have a 1 inch margin all around.  All tables and graphs should be part of the appendix.  The works cited and appendix pages do not count as part of the 14-17 page requirement.

Each group will present its paper during the last three class periods.  The paper will be due in class on Thursday, May 1.

You will turn in a project proposal on March 25.  This will be a 2-3 page paper describing your project, why you plan on doing it, and a list of tasks you’ll need to complete.  You will also submit three possible sources.

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