We work to understand and explain the global environment and the local realities of our world today, and share our insight, observations and debates with you.



We develop and apply ideas to topics where we can make a difference, transforming our knowledge into practice together with partner organisations.


Recent Publications

The Polis

Have you ever thought about why development cooperation is often ineffective? So have we.

The Polis is ReSET’s flagship project. It stems from seeing that development cooperation does not work when its projects are not locally formulated and led. Moreover, when projects are local-led, they often encounter problems in finding the necessary resources to turn idea into reality.  
The Polis creates Local-Led Connections. These are a match between locally demanded services and global resources, and allow local needs and ambitions to be satisfied in a simple and effective way.

Read more

Global Problems, Local Solutions: The Case of the US and Yemen

/ 21st April 2015 /

Emboldened by Yemen’s continued internal fragility, Saudi Arabia is attempting to strengthen its control of the Arabian Peninsula through aggressive military action. It does so with direct support from the United States, which earlier removed its own remaining troops from the republic. Both Washington and Riyadh view the violence in Yemen as part of a

Read more

Local First: An interview with Rosie Pinnington

/ 7th April 2015 /

This April we are focusing on Local First, a campaign initiated by Peace Direct that promotes local leadership in international aid and development. Peace Direct is an organisation that supports local peacebuilders. The Local First project was born from the willingness of Peace Direct to develop locally led partnership models by collecting good practice models

Read more

Q&A with Joanna Klever I Head of Fundraising

/ 7th April 2015 /

Joanna Klever is Head of Fundraising. She joined the Polis team in June 2014 bringing in exactly what was needed for fundraising: a creative thinking combined with a willingness to do things differently! Her interest in innovative development approaches was born during her stay in the Dominican Republic where Joanna worked for the former German

Read more

International Cooperation: reality or farce?

/ 7th April 2015 /

International development cooperation has been heavily criticised over the past decades. Both methods and objectives have been questioned, and involved actors are regularly accused of ineffective behaviour. What is less often analysed, however, is the human psychology on which international cooperation is based. Political motivations are often highlighted, and so are financial incentives, but the

Read more

The Dark Side of International Volunteering: shedding light on its negative impact

/ 7th April 2015 /

Well-intentioned international volunteers often have a counterproductive impact where they go. The experience of volunteering in the community of Tsiroanomandidy, Madagascar, is a useful reference to explore the wider issues surrounding the economic, educational and psychological ramifications of volunteering in the education sector. International volunteers are considered part of ‘the wider international development agenda’, and

Read more

Fighting the Islamic State: global mistakes and local solutions

/ 3rd April 2015 /

The current military campaign led by the United States (U.S.) against the Islamic State (IS) in Iraq and Syria is not having the expected outcomes: the organisation is neither beaten nor destroyed nor eliminated. Measures taken by the governments involved are practical short-term answers to the pressing threat posed by IS. They are not part

Read more