Decolonizing Development: Program Design & Project Implementation

  • Session 1: Decolonizing Program Design
    November 18, 2020
    7:30 AM - 9:30 AM
  • Session 2: Decolonizing Project Implementation
    December 9, 2020
    7:30 AM - 9:30 AM

Please note, this program is only for Members & Tenants of the Posner Center. This program is currently sold out.

It is time for global development to reckon with our colonial past and dismantle the systems still embedded in our work. The legacy of colonization, imperialism and other historical and societal forces underpin our work in global development. Just like in the US for us to dismantle the legacy of slavery and Jim Crow laws, we have to understand and confront our history, we believe that to help us understand, analyze and ultimately build a more impactful way forward, we need to confront the historical legacies in global development. To help us do that, we use a decolonizing lens. We use “decolonization” as a catch-all phrase to help us break down these multi- and inter-disciplinary forces that create the current status quo. This includes conducting historical and power analysis to more fully understand the contexts in which work, and to help us better design and implement programs. Read more about this approach here

This first set of workshops will apply the core concepts of decolonizing the field of global development and provide participants with applicable tools to apply along the project lifecycle from design to implementation.

Session Details

Wednesday, November 18 | 7:30am-9:30am MDT
Session 1: Decolonizing Program Design. This session will include an overview of core concepts and focus on key analysis tools and methods for thinking of program design through a decolonized lens. This session will build foundational concepts, and learn how to ask critical questions and conduct a detailed historical and power analysis to inform better program design, including monitoring, evaluation and learning plans.

Wednesday, December 9 | 7:30am-9:30am MDT
Session 2: Decolonizing Project Implementation. This session will continue to build key vocabulary and concepts core to decolonizing development and will focus on the tools and methods to ensure decolonized implementation of programs. This session will include how to prove from participatory to decolonized work planning, how to better engage stakeholders, and how to best recruit and manage teams for global programs (including home and field office dynamics). 

Office Hours. We know how critical it is for us to connect workshops to our actual day-to-day work. As such, we will hold two optional “office hours” for participants to ask specific questions directly related to the work they are doing. 

Workgroups. The Posner Center will be organizing place-based workgroups to support the implementation of decolonization both at the Posner Center and at our community’s organizations. More information about these workgroups will be announced soon.


Who should participate?
This program is only for Members & Tenants of the Posner Center. As a community, the Posner Center is committed to going beyond learning to implementing decolonization practices in development. You should be an active global development practitioner willing to make changes at your organization and incorporate a decolonizing lens into your work. Please contact our Program Director if you need help engaging decision makers at your organization.


Farah Mahesri
Farah Mahesri, Lead consultant and DE&I expert  
Farah is both an experienced international development expert with more than 15 years of experience in global development and DE&I expert with nearly 10 years of working on diversity initiatives. She was also the co-author of the 2018 State of Diversity in Global Social Impact report. She is a skilled facilitator and expert in training design; and has experience conducting organizational development work both as internal staff for an organization and as an external consultant. She has also served on multiple boards and brings her lived experience to board engagement. You can see more about her work at


This program is priced to cover a portion of the facilitator costs, the remainder of which is being covered by donations from iDE, Global Seed Savers, and the Posner Center. Please determine how much you should pay using the below categories, and consider donating to support additional decolonizing development programming. To further support this work, please contact our Development Director or make a donation here.

The Posner Center for International Development is committed to accessibility and inclusion for all people. To request additional accommodations or for questions about accessibility, please contact Lauren Andraski at  or 720-515-9074.

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Zoom link will be provided prior to the meeting.