The Centre for Development Studies (CDS) was founded on October 19, 1970, by the noted economist, Professor K N Raj. It is an autonomous social science research centre supported by the Indian Council of Social Science Research (ICSSR) and the Government of Kerala. Its main activities are research, teaching and training in the broad area of development studies.
Research at the Centre is organised along 11 themes such as culture and development, decentralisation and governance, gender and development, human development, health and education, industry and trade, innovation and technology, employment and social security, international and internal migration, agriculture and plantation crops and politics and development. Research done at CDS is theoretically informed but empirically oriented.
Teaching at the centre is conducted in terms of a two-year Master’s Programme in Applied Economics and a Four-year plus PhD Programme in Economics. For both these programmes, the Centre is affiliated to Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), New Delhi. The Centre conducts many short-duration training programmes such as the Teaching Innovations Programme for College Teachers in Economics, research methodology courses in social sciences in general and in international migration and innovation policy in particular. It has a resident faculty of 23 supplemented with about 14 Visiting Professors/Fellows from both India and abroad.
The well-stocked Library at the centre has a total and growing collection of books on economics and other social sciences which number about 1,50, 000 and the library subscribes to over 3500 journals, most of which are digital in type.
The Centre’s campus is very green, fully Wi-Fi enabled, has a purpose-built guest house, spacious hostels, cafeteria and residential accommodation for both its faculty and non-academic staff.
The management of the Centre is vested under a Governing Body consisting of 15 members from the Government of Kerala, the ICSSR, JNU, University of Kerala etc. Further, there are many other committees assisting the Governing Body. The current Chairman of the governing body is Shri K M Chandrasekhar and the current Director of the Centre is Professor Sunil Mani.