Farewell Diane Elson (on her retirement)

Diane Elson has been a prominent member of the department since 2000.  She has now officially retired but will be keeping her links with the department.

Farewell Diane Elson (on her retirement)

‘It is within gender and development… that Elson’s pioneering and enduring contribution to scholarship is most apparent. No student of gender and development in any part of the world today completes a course at undergraduate or postgraduate level without some exposure to Elson. Given Elson’s on-going ventures into cutting-edge issues in the GAD field … and with their hallmark rigour and vision, this situation is unlikely to change for a long time to come. In turn, there is absolute certainty that Elson will be present as one of GAD’s outstanding scholars and ambassadors in any retrospective review of gender and development that may be compiled in the future’

Sylvia Chant (2005) ‘Diane Elson’

A retirement conference for was held on Friday July 26th 2013 at the University. Many of the participants are pictured above.  This was the programme:

Feminism, Economy and Human Rights

10.50 Brief Introduction by Professor Mark Harvey

11.00-12.30 Political Economy

Professor Sue Himmelweit, Open University: ‘Follow the money: Diane’s Elson’s contribution to gender budgeting’

Professor Tracey Warren, Nottingham University: ‘Gender and the economic crisis: Elson’s 3 Sphere Framework’

Professor Georgina Waylen, Manchester University: ‘Feminist Political Economy: Taking Stock and Future Directions?’

12.30 – 1.15  Buffet Lunch

1.15 – 2.45 Development studies

Professor Sylvia Chant, London School of Economics: ‘Diane Elson:  A tribute to her early and on-going contributions to ‘en-gendering’ the ‘development agenda’’

Professor Shirin Rai, University of Warwick: ‘Depletion: the cost of social reproduction’

3 – 4.30 Human Rights

Professor Maxine Molyneux, University College London: ‘Who remembers Beijing? Women’s rights in a cold climate’
Professor Lydia Morris, University of Essex: Sociology and Human Rights

4.45 – 6.15 Final Panel: Reflections and Future Directions

Professor Diane Elson
Professor Ruth Pearson, Leeds University
Dr Jasmine Gideon, Birkbeck
Dr Marzia Fontana, Sussex University

Followed by a wine reception, and dinner

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  1. #1 by Lourdes Colinas on July 4, 2013 - 7:58 pm

    I came to Essex in 2002 to study my MA in Sociology of Development and one of my main motivations to be here was to meet Diane Elson because I had read many of their writings on gender and development. I was so lucky to have her as my dissertation supervisor and I had the opportunity to learn so much from her. She was determinant in my life in terms of my future career and my research interests. Later on, I had the incredible opportunity to work with her in a very interesting project on Human Rights and Macroeconomics (I could not believe I was working with my mentor!). Today, I feel extremely lucky to have her as my supervisor of my PhD in Sociology. During these years I have been able to share with her wonderful life experiences and I have been so lucky to get to know her both professionally and personally, realising what a wonderful person she is. Muchas gracias querida maestra. Love, Lulu Colinas (from Mexico).

  2. #2 by Francisca Pereyra on July 8, 2013 - 4:54 pm

    I met Diane when she started working in the Department in 2000. I was lucky to have her as my supervisor both for my Masters and PhD dissertations. It was a privilege and a pleasure to have someone of her professional and human quality as my mentor in Essex. I feel so very grateful for all her generosity and support during my time there. I learnt a lot from her and I carry with me that great experience wherever I go. I wish her all the great things she deserves for this new stage, Muchas gracias Diane!! Love from Buenos Aires, Francisca Pereyra

  3. #3 by Maria José Moreno Ruiz on July 30, 2013 - 9:41 pm

    I met Professor Diane Elson in Chile in 2002. I was then a young development practitioner working for United Nations on gender mainstreaming.
    I was impressed by her.
    I was impressed by the rigorous academic able to widen the thinking on macroeconomics, gender and rights. By the internationalist activist engaged against discrimination of women across the world. From this first encounter I admired and learnt from Diane’s constructive and “to the point” approach when she spoke to high level decision makers on measures to promote justice. I was also captivated by a woman with sense of humor and humility who transmitted the enjoyment of friendship and discovery. I decided then I would like to engage in the long adventure of a PhD with her. I did not know Essex yet, but knowing her was enough to “make my mind”. Understandably I felt lucky and fortunate when I received an affirmative answer. All Phds are long journeys and mine, being an open university student, working full time and living in 4 different countries through the length of it, was probably particularly intense. I do not imagine better companion for this journey than professor Elson. With her help and her example I have become more demanding, with myself and others, regarding academic thought on gender, class and development; Through our exchanges the responsibility of development practitioners, -like myself- when providing advice on public policy became more apparent, as people’s quality of life is at a stake. And all this has happened, in addition, sharing with a wonderful, kind and witty woman whose company is always a special present. A big thank you Diane, and all the best for the new adventures. Hasta la próxima, que espero que sea muy pronto. Con cariño, Maria José

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