Join global conversations around development policy, practice and research

Development policy aid and research hashtags and twitter handles

With the sustainable development goals (aka global goals) just adopted by the UN General Assembly, it might be interesting to follow online conversations around international development policy, development work on the ground and development research as these goals are being implemented.


For each topic, I suggest some hashtags on Twitter, ordered by category and popularity. I also list some influential tweeps to follow. Please feel free to suggest new ones if I missed out on anything or anyone.

Development policy

Hashtags to follow:

  • #development and #aid for general chatter around these two topics
  • #GlobalGoals, #SDGs, #Agenda2030 to keep informed of the goals recently adopted by the international community at the UN Sustainable Development Summit.
  • #globaldev for conversations around international / global development
  • #sustdev for conversations around sustainable development

There are also many specific policy hashtags created around the Millenium Development Goals (MDGs) to join more specialised conversations, such as #education4all, #health4all, #energy4all, #SE4all, #genderequality etc.

A trick to know the hashtags associated to one of the above, so that you can cover more ground, is It will show you correlated hashtags for any tag you type in, like this:

Tweeps to follow on each of these topics:

  • @UN
  • @UNDP
  • @SustDev
  • @WorldBank
  • @WHO
  • @UNICEF and
  • @EuropeAid for their contribution to global development and the implementation of the #GlobalGoals or #SDGs.
  • @USAid
  • @JICA_direct
  • @DFID_UK
  • @AFD_France
  • @AECID_es
  • @DFAT
  • @GIZ_gmbh and
  • @Noradno are the largest national development aid agencies and bilateral donors.
  • @GdnDevelopment
  • @Devex
  • @eaDevPol
  • @HuffingtonPost are media outlets with a special focus on global / international development.

Development practice

Hashtags to follow:

  • A number of best practices and examples in the field are being shared via the hashtags #ICT4D #tech4dev #comm4dev #finance4dev, etc.
  • #devjobs #aidjobs to look for work in the development / aid sector.

To know which hashtags attract more conversations, you can compare them using Topsy. Here is a benchmark I did today comparing the use of #UNGA, #GlobalGoals and #SDGs. Guess which is the most popular?

topsy image

Tweeps to follow for exchanges of best practices and inspiration on development practices across the world:

  • There are some relevant development blogs you can read content from on Twitter, including from @DFID_UK @WorldBank and @ideas4dev.
  • The development community connects to share knowledge on @capacity4dev @SID_Int and @GuardianGDP.

Development research

Hashtags to follow:

  • It’s difficult to point to one or a few hashtags on this topic as development is such a transversal issue.
  • One hashtag to keep an eye on is #research4dev + all other thematic hashtags you are interested in adding #research at the end of your query.

Tweeps to follow on development research:

  • @odidev @iied @IDS_UK @iisd_news and @ECDPM are influential development think (and do) tanks on Twitter
  • @sid_int @SOASDevelopment @DPP_OUand @Developmentuea are academic centres for development research
  • @GlobalDevLab @dfid_research @OECDDev and @rdnor represent the research arm of some of the development agencies and international organisations mentioned above.

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