It started with Costa Rica in 1999. 35 students interested in international policy formed a committee and began working with professors to ramp up the international curriculum in their Master of Public Policy program at the Ford School of Public Policy. With the help of the school and faculty, the committee created a three credit class called the International Economic Development Program (IEDP). After spending the fall semester looking at the problems befalling Costa Rica, the group traveled there in the spring and examined the policy issues firsthand.
Now in its 15th year, IEDP has become an annual hybrid class that starts with research intensive classwork in the fall and culminates in a 10 day trip to the country of study over spring break. Students plan the trip, develop the curriculum and produce a final report. Over 350 students have had an opportunity to learn and travel through the program. This spring 22 students from three different professional schools with be going to Brazil. Accompanying them will be Professor Mel Levitsky, the former U.S. Ambassador to Brazil from 1994 to 1998 and Professor Liz Gerber, a specialist in regional politics and intergovernmental cooperation.
This blog will serve to archive and inform. We hope to create an active feed of the lecturers we host and our progress in the class. Additionally, we want this blog to become a resource for people interested about Brazil. Culture, current events and policy topics will also be covered on a weekly basis.
We encourage you to follow us on twitter for additional updates and information. We are always open to your thoughts and comments. Please feel free to email the blog or any of our writers with your feedback.
Please consider making a tax-exempt donation to help fund IEDP’s trip to Brazil. Your gift is indispensable and will help defray critical program costs. To make a secure donation through the University of Michigan, follow this link, enter the amount of your donation, and type “for IEDP” as a comment on the next screen.