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Introduction to International Development

Course Number: GS211

Subject: Global Studies

Please see the different sections below for all the content covered in the in-class research workshop.

Step 1: think about important terms / research question
  • Dr. Maathai noted the destruction of indigenous forest for agricultural use and introduction of non-indigenous trees
    • Other observations:
      Impact of forest loss on soil erosion and other impacts like river siltation
      Impact on vegetation (loss of grasses) and undernourishment of livestock

Example research question and sub-questions/themes

  • What was the environmental impact of settler colonialism in Kenya?
    • What was the impact of settler colonialism on forests in Kenya?
    • What is the state of Kenya's forests today?
    • How have non-native species impacted the Kenyan environment/ecosystems?
    • What was the impact of the Green Belt Movement?
Step 2: Developing keywords for your search

Example research question 1

  • What was the environmental impact of settler colonialism in Kenya?

Possible terms:

  • Kenya
  • Environment
  • Colonialism
    • Impact(s) or effect(s) or result(s)   (these can be added if you are retrieving too much)

Example search in Omni (results for books only)

Example research question 2

  • How have non-native species impacted the Kenyan environment/ecosystems?

Possible terms:

  • Kenya
  • species
  • non-native, introduced, alien, invasive
  • tree, forest

Example search in ProQuest (broad search)

Step 3: Refining results in databases using specific techniques
  • use AND to narrow forests, e.g.: Kenya AND forest
  • use OR to broaden results, e.g.: forest OR tree
  • use * to retrieve spelling variants, e.g.: coloni* = colonial, colonial, colonization
  • use " " to specify an exact phrase search, e.g.: "settler colonialism"

See also:

Better searching using AND, OR, NOT

Better searching using truncation

Selected Development Journals list combined using "OR"

If you want to simultaneously search the journals Dr. Sliwinski references in the Appendix, follow these steps:

  • copy the list below 
  • visit a database like ProQuest or Web of Science
  • change the search from the defaults to search by "Publication Title" (using drop down field selectors)
  • paste in the list
  • use additional keywords in your search as needed, as shown in class


"African Development Review" OR "Alternatives" OR "Asia-Pacific Journal of Rural Development" OR "Conflict Security and Development" OR "Development and Change" OR "Development in Practice" OR "Economic Development and Cultural Change" OR "Environment, Development and Sustainability" OR "Gender and Development" OR "Gender, technology and Development" OR "Journal of Development Studies" OR "Journal of Development Alternatives and Area Studies" OR "Journal of Development Economics" OR "Journal of Human Development" OR "Journal of International Development" OR "OECD Journal on Development" OR "Oxford Development Studies" OR "Peace, Conflict and Development" OR "Sustainable Development" OR "Third World Quarterly" OR "World Development" OR "World Watch" 

Page Owner: Peter Genzinger

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Last Updated: May 6, 2024 12:42pm