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The Hydén Award

For the best Bachelor or Master thesis on socio-economic and political issues in low- and middle-income countries.

The Hydén Award is granted annually to mark the best thesis on socio-economic and political issues in low- and middle-income countries, as presented by a Bachelor or Masters level student at Lund University.

The Hydén Award 2023 is pending

At the moment we do not know if or when it will be possible to nominate theses.

Award Criteria

Bachelor and Master level theses presented at Lund University within the social sciences (or closely related disciplines) during the academic year of 2021/2022 are can be nominated for the Hydén award. The thesis must address development issues, such as democratic development, human rights, poverty, environment, health, and conflicts. In terms of geographical focus, the thesis should follow the guidelines of Minor Field Studies (Sida Scholarship).

Read more about the guidelines of Minor Field Studies on Sida's website

The submitted thesis is evaluated according to a number of criteria. The thesis should demonstrate independent analytical skills and ability to make use of theory in empirical analysis. The thesis must also fulfil scientific methodological requirements and display the methodological awareness of the author. The originality and urgency of the theme and how this is dealt with, is also taken into account, as well as the level of difficulty of the research question.

The previous winners are:

  • 2022 Louise Gripenberg for her Master’s Thesis titled “A Maasai Model to Wildlife Conservation: Exploring environmental subjectivities among the Maasai living in and around Naretunoi Community Conservancy and next to Nairobi National Park in Kenya”. (LUMID)
  • 2022 Honorary Mention to Diana Morina for her Master’s Thesis titled “’We are humans, not animals’ – Obsteric Violence in Kosovo: an Intersectional Analysis of Women’s Response to Obsteric Violence”. (Department of Gender Studies).
  • 2021 Alejandra de Bárcena Myrsep for her master’s thesis titled “Applied Cultural Analysis on the ‘futility of research’ and the ‘burden of occupation” (Master of Applied Cultural Analysis)
  • 2021 Honorary Mention to Ana Maria Teresa Morales for her master’s thesis titled “Deconstructing Informality: Evidence from South American Household Surveys” (Economic History)
  • 2020 Helena Wisbech Frid for her Master’s Thesis titled “‘Sabotage’ of the Disi Water Conveyance in rural Southeast Jordan: An investigation of the mechanisms constructing the phenomenon through the morphogenetic ‘water’ justice cycle”. (LUMID)
  • 2019 Hugo Dürr for his Master’s thesis ”Maternal Health and the Three Delays Model in Rural Guatemala -Examining Factors Affecting Maternal Health-Seeking Behaviours and Health Service Utilisation in Quiché”. (LUMID)
  • 2018 Selorm Kobla Kugbega for his Master’s thesis “Are Indigenous Farmers’ Investments Under Siege? Implications of farmer-herder conflicts and threats to customary land tenure on indigenous farmers’ agricultural investment decisions in Agogo, Ghana”. (LUMID)
  • 2018 Honorary Mention to Clara Nepper Winther for her Bachelor’s thesis titled ”Otro Mundo Es Posible – Transcultural Tongues and Times of Change. A critical ethnography on an indigenous movement’s concept of time in relation to emancipatory social changes”. (Bachelor in Development Studies/BIDS)
  • 2017 Magdalena Nergården for her Master's thesis "No Place Like Home. Development-Induced Displacement. A Crime of Forcible Transfer of Populations" (Master of Laws Program)
  • 2016 Hyeon-Soo Jeon for her Master's thesis "Articulating the Shan migrant community in Thai society through community radio. A case study of the Map radio FM 99 in the city of Chiang Mai, Thailand" (LUMID)
  • 2016 The Honorary mention goes to Emma Brunberg for her Master’s thesis titled “Conditional Cash Transfers and Gender Equality: Short‐Term Effects on Female Empowerment” (Economics)
  • 2015 Laura Heiberg Pedersen for her B.A. thesis “Flowing power in the Community: How decisions are made and their consequences for water accessibility in western Kenya” (Bachelor in Development Studies/BIDS)
  • 2015 Honorary mention Jacco Visser for his Master’s thesis titled “Towards a Mobile Indigeneity? The Case of Indigenous Students from the Chittagong Hill Tracts in Dhaka, Bangladesh (Asian Studies)
  • 2014 Liyen Chin “Period of shame: The effects of menstrual hygiene management on rural women and girls’ quality of life in Savannakhet, Laos” (LUMID)
  • 2014 Honorary mention Åsa Maria Hermansson “Political Organization in the Informal Economy. Organizing street Vendors in Bogotá, Colombia” (Bachelor in Development Studies/BIDS)
  • 2013 Cecilia Fåhraeus “In the eye of the beholder? Exploring the connection between slum upgrading and gentrification in an improved settlement in Metro Manila” (Human Geography)
  • 2012 Srilata Sircar “Where ‘everyone’ has migrated. Exploring Social Transformation under the impact of labour migration” (LUMID)
  • 2012 Honorary mention Xiaowei Chen“An exploratory case study of HIV impacted children in Henan province, China” (LUMID)
  • 2011 Klas Nilsson “The Ties That Bind—A Study of Diaspora Engagement Policies in Ghana” (Political Science)
  • 2011 Honorary mention Sara Norlén “In the world of flying toilets – Perceived health benefits of improved physical environment. A case study of Nairobi slums” (LUMID)
  • 2010 Söderberg, Stefan “Islands of Merit- Explaining Partial ‘Meritocratization’ in the Egyptian Bureaucracy (Political Science)
  • 2009 Robert Blasiak "Playing Smart. A Game Theory Approach to Aid Coordination in Cambodia" (LUMID)
  • 2008 Stina Nilsson "Mot mer makt? En studie om utvecklingsländers maktsituation i Världshandelsorganisationen WTO" (Political Science)
  • 2007 Johanna Bergman Lodin "The Cassava Production - Markteting Continuum and the Challenges of New Technology Diffusion in Sierra Leone" (Human Geography)
  • 2006 Anna Sundell "Narration and Identity. Dealing with Social and Ideological Heterogeneity in the Kefaya Movement" (Political Science)
  • 2005 Martin Carlstedt "Democracy as Interaction: A Minor Field Study of Local Political Practices in Rural Tanzania" (Political Science)
  • 2004 Ted Svensson "Hindu Right Discourse - Hegemonic Articulation and Social Antagonism" (Political Science)
  • 2003 Kajsa Helmbring "The Hidden Africa-Dummy: Is There Social Capital Deficit in the Mozambican Economy?" (Economics)
  • 2002 Annika Hughes "Broadening the Scope of Political Power" (Political Science)


The Hydén Award is announced at the annual Development Research Day at Lund University. 


The Hydén Award was established in 2002 following a PhD course conducted by Professor Göran Hydén with students from political science, sociology and economic history, which resulted in the book "Demokratisering i tredje världen" (“Democratisation in the Third World”) published in 1998. The book had Professor Hydén as editor and eleven of the PhD students as authors. The royalties of this book formed the basis of the award, which is now presented annually at the Development Research Day in order to promote studies within the field.

Professor Hydén received his PhD at the Department of Political Science, Lund University, in 1968, and has since then pursued his academic career in several countries in Africa and in USA. In 1999 he became Distinguished Professor of Political Science at the University of Florida, Gainesville.