Department of Politics and Society

DIR - Research Center on Development and International Relations

DIR - Research Center on Development and International Relations

DIR - Research Center on Development and International Relations - started as an interfaculty and interdisciplinary research unit undertaking research and postgraduate teaching in the field of development and international relations. Its origin as an academic unit began in 1982. In 1995, DIR evolved into an interdisciplinary research center to promote knowledge production on problems and challenges that enable critical enquiry and contributions to research in our focus areas.

The uniqueness of DIR - Research Center on Development and International Relations, both in research and teaching, lies in the combination of two interdisciplinary fields - development studies and international relations – that engender critical enquiry, critical thinking, creativity and open-mindedness.

The research group’s main focus points

In Development and International Relations (DIR), we study the changing world order and processes of political and social change with a focus on sustainability. We study state and non-state actors across multiple levels, including international organizations, governments, NGOs and social movements, which allows us to understand governance from the global to the local. Our research is highly relevant to the UN sustainable development goals. We have a regional focus on China and Latin America both as localities where new forms of governance and civil society occur, and as actors in the changing world order. Our research falls within three interlinked areas:

  • Changing world order
    • China’s role in a changing world order 
    • Emerging markets: consumers and producers

  • Civil society and multilevel governance
    • Social movements, collective actions, and NGO’s 
    • Environmental justice and human rights
    • Digitalization, control  through categorization, and trust
    • Sustainable education

  • Global environmental sustainability and resource governance 
    • The global politics of climate change
    • Climate change adaptation and mitigation processes
    • The international political economy of resources governance

Contact DIR

Contact DIR: Head of research Li Xing

Phone: +45 9940 8426

More about DIR
Department of Politics and Society • Fibigerstræde 1 og 3, 9220 Aalborg East • Frederikskaj 10B, 2450 Copenhagen SV
Phone.: +45 9940 8310 • Email:
VAT no.: 29102384 • EAN no.: 5798000420656 • P numbers: Aalborg: 1003888237, Copenhagen: 1018019139