Heloise Weber



Senior Lecturer in International Relations and Development, University of Queensland (Australia)

Resident at the Forschungskolleg Humanwissenschaften:
June – October 2018

Research topic at the Forschungskolleg Humanwissenschaften:
»Human Rights and Global Development: A Critical Inquiry«

Project outline:
In line with my research interests in the politics of global development and inequalities (understood as a historically constituted global project/ world politics), I have over the past couple of years been developing a research project on Human Rights (HR) and Global Development. My preliminary research findings suggest that there are some quite significant tensions in the emerging HR and Global Development framework. This is most evident with regard to the privileging of rights that align with global commercial and investment (including free trade) law as justiciable rights. Increasingly trade law (lex mercatoria) is aligned with development law. The 2030 Sustainable Development Goals [SDGs] agenda is the most recent high-level international development framework also adopted as a United Nations Resolution. This particular alignment of HR and Global Development could potentially result in further conflict as life sustaining needs such as water, food, shelter (to name a few) are no longer conceived as universal entitlements. Instead, their realisation is now tethered to the question of »trade law«, which is increasingly the domain of justiciable rights. For instance, this concerns the protection of new forms of investment law as property law as provided for under the General Agreement of Trade in Services of the World Trade Organisation [WTO]. This emerging global framing of HR and Global Development occurs arguably at a historically unique conjuncture and one that has also been subject to crucial challenges, ethically, socially and politically (see, for instance, the recent rise of social movement politics). (Heloise Weber)

Research partner:
Heloise Weber follows the invitation of Gunther Hellmann (Professor of Political Science, Goethe University) and the Cluster of Excellence »The Formation of Normative Orders«.

Scholarly profile of Heloise Weber


Heloise Weber is a Senior Lecturer in International Relations and Development at the University of Queensland. She also has served on the International Studies Association (ISA) Governing Council as Chair of Global Development Studies Section.

Furthermore Dr. Heloise Weber is currently working on the Collaborative Research Project: »Namibisch-deutsche Beziehungen und normative Herausforderungen: Beyond the Constrictions of International Development and International Relations?« with Prof. Dr. Gunther Hellmann and Dr. Martin Weber.
For further information click here.

Main areas of research:
Global Politics of Development and Inequality; International Studies/Relations; Colonialism and its legacies; Postcolonial Theory and Decolonizing Thought; Social Movements and Politics of Resistance; Politics of Comparative Method(s); Relational Analysis.

Selected publications:
  1. (with R.J.B. Walker, Robbie Shilliam and Gitte Du Plessis) »Collective Discussion Diagnosing the Present«, in: International Political Sociology, 12/1 (2018), p. 88-107. (https://academic.oup.com/ips/article/12/1/88/4897847)
  2. »Politics of Leaving No One Behind: Contesting the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals«, in: Globalizations, 14/3 (2017), p. 399-414.
  3. (with Mark T. Berger) Rethinking the Third World- International Development and World Politics, Basingstoke: Palgrave 2014.
  4. (Ed.) The Politics of Development – A Survey, London: Routledege 2014.
  5. »A Political Analysis of the Formal Comparative Method: Historicizing the Globalization and Development Debate«, in: Globalizations, 4/4 (2007), p. 559-572.