Dr Severine Deneulin

Associate Fellow in International Development

Séverine Deneulin is Associate Fellow in International Development at ODID, and Director of International Development at the Laudato Si’ Research Institute, Campion Hall, the oldest Permanent Private Hall at the University of Oxford.

Her research is in the area of development ethics, focusing on the works in ethics and economics by Indian economist and philosopher Amartya Sen. Her research seeks to bring spiritual and theological traditions into dialogue with the social sciences on matters of global socio-economic development and sustainability. Her regional expertise is Latin America.

Her books include Human Development and the Catholic Social Tradition (Routledge, 2021), Wellbeing, Justice and Development Ethics (Routledge, 2014), Religion in Development (with Masooda Bano, Zed Books 2009). She has published many articles on development ethics and the role of religion in development, including in World Development, Third World Quarterly, Development and Change.

Prior to coming to ODID, she was Associate Professor of International Development at the University of Bath, where she continues to be Visiting Associate Professor. Séverine holds a DPhil in International Development from the University of Oxford, and a MSc in Economics from the University of Louvain in her native Belgium.


Séverine coordinates the Core Course in the MPhil in Development Studies at ODID, and lectures in it on poverty and human development. She is co-convening an elective course on ‘Valuing Nature: Ethical Frameworks and Policy Implications’ at the School of Geography and the Environment. She is also convening the International Development Policy Specialism course in the Professional Doctorate in Policy Research and Practice at the University of Bath.

Research Students supervised

Books and monographs

Deneulin, Séverine (2021) 'Human Development and the Catholic Social Tradition: Towards an Integral Ecology. Religion and Development Research Series', Routledge
Deneulin, Séverine (with Mathias Nebel, Nicholas Sagovsky) (eds) (2021) 'Transforming Unjust Structures: The Capability Approach', Springer
Deneulin, Séverine (2014) 'Wellbeing, Justice and Development Ethics', Routledge
Deneulin, Séverine (with Masooda Bano) (2009) 'Religion in Development: Rewriting the Secular Script', Zed Books
Deneulin, Séverine (ed) (2009) 'An Introduction to the Human Development and Capability Approach: Freedom and Agency', Earthscan/International Development Centre of Canada
Deneulin, Séverine (2006) 'The Capability Approach and the Praxis of Development', Palgrave

Journal articles and special issues

Deneulin, Séverine (forthcoming) 'Religion and Development: Integral Ecology and the Catholic Church Amazon Synod,', Third World Quarterly
Deneulin, Séverine (with Simon McGrath) (2021) 'Education for Just Transitions Lifelong Learning and the 30th Anniversary Human Development Report’', International Review of Education
Deneulin, Séverine (with Ann Mitchell) (2019) 'Spirituality and impact evaluation design', HTS Theological Studies 75 (4) a5482
Deneulin, Séverine (with Jhonatan Clausen) (2019) 'Collective Choice and Social Welfare by Amartya Sen: A Review Essay with Reference to Development Policy in Peru', Development Policy Review 37 (4) 564-78
Deneulin, Séverine (2018) 'Integral human development through the lens of Amartya Sen’s capability approach and a faith community at the Latin American urban margins', Journal of Catholic Social Thought 15 (2)
Deneulin, Séverine (with Diego Sánchez-Ancochea) (2018) 'Urban Inequality, Youth and Social Policy in Latin America', Oxford Development Studies 46 (1) 3-9
Deneulin, Séverine (with Ann Mitchell and Pablo del Monte) (2018) 'School completion in urban Latin America: The voices of young people from an informal settlement', Oxford Development Studies 46 (1) 46-56
Deneulin, Séverine (2017) 'Engaging Development with Religion: Methodological Groundings', World Development 99 (Nov) 110-121
Deneulin, Séverine (2016) 'Expanding Freedoms, Changing Structures: Assessment of the Human Development Report 2014', Development and Change 47 (4) 937-51
Deneulin, Séverine (with Augusto Zampini) (2016) 'Theology and Development as Capability Expansion', HTS Theological Studies (South African journal of theology) 72( 1)
Deneulin, Séverine (with Joe Devine and Graham K. Brown) (2015) 'Contesting the Boundaries of Religion in Social Mobilization', Journal of South Asian Development 10 (1) 22-47
Deneulin, Séverine (2013) 'Ethics and Development: An Introduction from the Perspective of the Capability Approach', Geography Compass 7 (3) 217-27
Deneulin, Séverine (2013) 'Recovering Nussbaum’s Aristotelian Roots', International Journal of Social Economics 40 (7) 624-32
Deneulin, Séverine (with Ana Dinerstein) (2012) 'Hope Movements: Naming Mobilization in a Post-development World', Development and Change 43 (2) 585-602
Deneulin, Séverine (2011) 'Development and the Limits of Amartya Sen’s The Idea of Justice', Third World Quarterly 32 (4) 787-97
Deneulin, Séverine (with Carole Rakodi) (2011) 'Revisiting Religion: Development Studies Thirty Years On', World Development 39 (1) 45-54
Deneulin, Séverine (with J Allister McGregor) (2010) 'The Capability Approach and the Politics of a Social Conception of Wellbeing', European Journal of Social Theory 13 (4) 501-19
Deneulin, Séverine (with Susan Hodgett) (2009) 'On the Use of Narratives for Assessing Development Policy', Public Administration 87 (1) 65-79
Deneulin, Séverine (with Tom De Herdt) (2007) 'Individual Freedoms as Relational Experiences: Guest editors’ introduction', Journal of Human Development 8 (2) 179-84
Deneulin, Séverine (with Nicholas Townsend) (2007) 'Public Goods, Global Public Goods and the Common Good', International Journal of Social Economics 34 (1/2) 19-36
Deneulin, Séverine (2006) 'Amartya Sen’s Capability Approach to Development and Gaudium et Spes', Journal of Catholic Social Thought 3 (2) 355-72
Deneulin, Séverine (with James Sweeney) (2006) 'Editorial: Faith’s Public Role: Politics and Theology', Political Theology 7 (3) 261-63
Deneulin, Séverine (2006) 'Secularism and the Public-Private Divide: A Response to David Lehmann', Political Theology 7 (3) 295-98
Deneulin, Séverine (2006) 'Individual Well-Being, Migration Remittances and the Common Good', European Journal of Development Research 18 (1) 45-61
Deneulin, Séverine (2005) 'Development as Freedom and the Costa Rican Human Development Story', Oxford Development Studies 33 (3/4) 493-510
Deneulin, Séverine (2005) 'Promoting Human Freedoms under Conditions of Inequalities: A Procedural Framework', Journal of Human Development 6 (1) 75-92
Deneulin, Séverine (with Frances Stewart) (2002) 'Amartya Sen’s Contribution to Development Thinking', Studies in Comparative International Development, with response by Amartya Sen 37 (2) 61-70
Deneulin, Séverine (2002) 'Perfectionism, Liberalism and Paternalism in Sen and Nussbaum’s Capability Approach', Review of Political Economy 14 (4) 497-518


Deneulin, Séverine (forthcoming) 'Religion and Development'. In M Clarke (ed) Elgar Encyclopedia of Development , Edward Elgar
Deneulin, Séverine (with Augusto Zampini Davies) (2020) 'Religion and the Capability Approach'. In S Osmani, M Qizilbash and E Chiappero-Martinetti (eds) The Cambridge Handbook of the Capability Approach , Cambridge University Press
Deneulin, Séverine (2020) 'Human Dignity - Does It Imply a Certain Kind of Agency? A Viewpoint from Sen’s Capability Approach to Development'. In P Carozza, C Sedmak (eds) The Practice of Human Development and Dignity , Notre Dame University Press
Deneulin, Séverine (with Oscar Garza Vazquéz) (2018) 'The Capability Approach: Ethics and Socio-Economic Development'. In J Dydryk, L Keleher (eds) Handbook of Development Ethics , Routledge
Deneulin, Séverine (with A Mitchell, E Lépore and AL Suárez) (2017) 'A Framework for Urban Integration: The Case of Buenos Aires'. In H-U Otto, H Ziegler and M Walker (eds) Capability-Promoting Policies , Policy Press
Deneulin, Séverine (2017) 'Evangelii Gaudium and Amartya Sen’s Idea of Justice'. In D Dormor, A Harris (eds) Pope Francis, Evangelii Gaudium, and the Renewal of the Church , Paulist Press
Deneulin, Séverine (2014) 'Constructing new policy narratives: The capability approach as normative language'. In F Stewart, GA Cornia (eds) Towards Human Development: New Approaches to Macroeconomics and Inequality , Oxford University Press
Deneulin, Séverine (2013) 'Christianity and Development: An Overview'. In M Clarke (ed) Development and Religion: Theology and Practice , Edward Elgar
Deneulin, Séverine (2011) 'Advancing Human Development: Values, Groups, Power and Conflict'. In J Heyer, R Thorp and V Fitzgerald (eds) Overcoming the Persistence of Inequality and Poverty , Palgrave
Deneulin, Séverine (2008) 'Beyond Individual Freedom and Agency: Structures of Living Together in Sen’s Capability Approach'. In S Alkire, F Comim and M Qizilbash (eds) The Capability Approach: Concepts, Measures and Application , Cambridge University Press
Deneulin, Séverine (2006) 'Necessary Thickening’: Ricoeur’s Ethics of Justice as a Complement to Sen’s Freedom Centred View of Development’'. In S Deneulin, M Nebel and N Sagovsky (eds) Transforming Unjust Structures: The Capability Approach , Springer
Deneulin, Séverine (with Sabina Alkire) (2002) 'Individual Motivation, its Nature, Determinants and Consequences for Within-group Behaviour'. In F Stewart, J Heyer and R Thorp (eds) Group Behaviour and Development , Oxford University Press
Research interests:

Climate change, natural resource extraction, social movements, religion and faith communities