Denisse Rodriguez-Olivari

MSc International Development: Politics and Governance

Why did you choose to study at The University of Manchester?

Denisse Rodriguez-Olivari

I am originally from Peru and chose to pursue a master’s degree at the University of Manchester because of its world-class research, global reputation, and heritage. I was particularly drawn to the university’s history and one of the leading department in development studies, the former IDPM.

Why did you choose your particular course?  

Trained as a political scientist, I was keen to further advance my skills in politics and development. That is why I choose the specialisation on Politics and Governance. My MA dissertation was on the politics of gender policies in Peru, which I later turned to a peer-review article. 

Has your qualification helped you in your career?

Obtained a postgraduate degree in the former IDPM, now GDI, was key to my research career. I was able to engage in stimulating discussions in methodology, measurements, case studies, and above all, critically assessing what we previously knew about development studies. Critical reflection on the development world and questioning common wisdom helped me become a better professor and researcher.

Were there any specific modules or lecturers who particularly inspired you?

The module on Politics and Development was pivotal to my research career. I first developed ideas that I later use on my doctoral dissertation and learned a lot from Prof Sarah Bracking, who provided key advice and advice during my time in Manchester.

What is your best memory from your time at Manchester?

I particularly enjoyed being part of a highly diverse and international research community. Having studied in universities in Peru (PUCP), France (SciencesPo), the UK (KCL, LSE and Manchester) and Germany (Humboldt University), I was exposed to different backgrounds and cultures, but none match Manchester’s diversity. I keep in touch with my fellow classmates and professors, and we still meet around the world when we have the chance.

Do you have any tips or advice for current or prospective students?  

I highly recommend prospective and current students to inform themselves about the university and institute’s services such as writing skills, career advice, inter-library loan services, library access as alumni, and many other options to be still connected to the GDI and Manchester community.