Plenary session
Closing panel: How is COVID-19 Changing Development?

The closing panel will bring together a set of leading thinkers to discuss how COVID-19 changed development. The panel will take stock on what has been learnt about the effect of the pandemic on lives and livelihoods of citizens in developing countries. The panel will also look to the future and assess how the pandemic may affect global development in the years to come and the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals. 

The panel will address the following questions:
i) How can the developing world build back better? What can the international policy community do in this regard?
ii) What are the lessons from the pandemic on how humans should interact with the natural world?
iii) How can the international architecture be improved to address the glaring inequities that have been evident in the global economy during the pandemic, especially related to vaccine distribution and macroeconomic imbalances?
iv) To what extent has COVID-19 accentuated the case for a global, rather than an international, development paradigm?   


Kunal Sen | Chair

Kunal Sen has over three decades of experience in academic and applied development economics research. He is the author of eight books and the editor of five volumes on the economics and political economy of development. From 2019 he is the Director of UNU-WIDER, and he is a professor of development economics at the Global Development Institute, University of Manchester.

Rohinton Medhora

Rohinton MedhoraRohinton P. Medhora is president of CIGI. His fields of expertise are monetary and trade policy, international economic relations and development economics. Rohinton sits on The Lancet and the Financial Times Commission on Governing Health Futures 2030, as well as the Commission on Global Economic Transformation, co-chaired by Nobel economics laureates Michael Spence and Joseph Stiglitz. He serves on the boards of the Institute for New Economic Thinking and the McLuhan Foundation and is on the advisory boards of the WTO Chairs Programme, UNU-MERIT, and Global Health Centre.

David HulmeDavid Hulme 

David Hulme is Professor of Development Studies at the University of Manchester where he is Executive Director of the Global Development Institute and CEO of the Effective States and Inclusive Development Research Centre. He has worked on rural development, poverty and poverty reduction, microfinance, the role of NGOs in conflict/peace and development, environmental management, social protection and the political economy of global poverty for more than 30 years.

Fatima DentonFatima Denton

Dr. Fatima Denton is the Director of the United Nations University Institute for Natural Resources in Africa (UNU-INRA). She is an accomplished senior leader in the UN system, respected across the research and implementation branches of the organization. She has depth of expertise in natural resource management, as well as deep knowledge of research and policy development, and the African region. Prior to joining UNU-INRA, Dr. Denton had worked with the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) in Ethiopia since 2012. Her roles included Director of the Natural Resource Management Division and Coordinator of the African Climate Policy Centre.

Marty ChenMarty Chen

Martha (Marty) Chen is a Lecturer in Public Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School and Senior Advisor of the global network Women in Informal Employment: Globalizing and Organizing (WIEGO). An experienced development practitioner and scholar, her area of specialization is the working poor in the informal economy. Dr Chen received a PhD in South Asia Regional Studies from the University of Pennsylvania; and was awarded a Padma Shri by the Government of India. Dr. Chen is Chair of the WIDER Board.