- September 15, 2021
8:00 AM - 10:00 AM
- September 22, 2021
8:00 AM - 10:00 AM
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 we work, and to help us better design and implement programs. Read more about this approach here.
Communications in international development – particularly in fundraising and reporting – continues to build on and use the hero narrative to demonstrate the impact of our work. This session will explore communications in Global Development along a spectrum from Diversity to Decolonization exploring key issues such as how to diversify our communications tools, how to be more inclusive in our communications, how to use more liberatory approaches, etc. This session will draw upon Mahesri’s original research on decolonizing communications by dismantling the hero/savior complex in global development communications. This session will include tools on how to conduct an audit of existing materials and how to reframe stories to share more authentic and equitable stories in our reporting and fundraising work.
Session Dates. This workshop consists of two 2-hour sessions and 2 optional office hours.
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.
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.
As the co-founder of Quantum Impact, a DE&I – focused non-profit and the co-author for the 2018 State of Diversity in Global Social Impact report, Ms. Mahesri 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 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 www.fnmadvising.com.
This program is priced to cover a portion of the facilitator costs, the remainder of which is being covered by donations from Water for People, iDE, Sherry Manning, 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. We use Zoom’s Live Transcription feature during all virtual events. This session will include simultaneous interpretation from English to Spanish for Spanish-speaking participants. To request additional accommodations or for questions about accessibility, please contact Lauren Andraski at or 720-515-9071.
Venue: Zoom Videoconferencing
Zoom link will be provided prior to the meeting.