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Development Revisited

  • Journal of Regional Studies and Development
  • Abbr : JRSD
  • 2010, 19(1), pp.37-69
  • Publisher : Institute for Poverty Alleviation and International Development: IPAID
  • Research Area : Social Science > Area Studies > Regional Studies in general > Comparative / Statistical Regional Studies

Geraldine Fraser-Moleketi 1 Demetrios Argyriades 2

1Former Minister of Public Service
2International Institute of Administrative Sciences

Candidate

ABSTRACT

Observing the evolution of post-war development theories, may not overlook the catalytic influence of shifting paradigms of State and public service, conflicting views on government, its proper role, objectives and modes of operation, the all-important concepts of power and legitimacy but, in the last analysis, the impact on those theories of sharply contradictory models of Man and Society. Such paradigms and models have, over time, exerted a significant measure of influence on the policies and programmes of the United Nations, the Bretton Woods Institutions and the UNDP. During the period covered by this report, three contradictory models have surfaced and prevailed in quick succession. The earliest underpinned the public-sector driven economic development programmes, which accompanied the process of decolonization and nation building in Asia, Africa and Latin America. This was followed, in the eighties, by a sharply contrasting approach; one that downplayed the role of State and public sector and emphasized the benefits of private enterprise. Both of those models suffered from narrow definitions of the nature, scope and process of development; definitions that precluded proper consideration of non-economic factors and stressed GDP growth over income distribution and the spread of opportunities. The Human Development Index has, since the 1990s, tried to correct the imbalances inherent in this approach. In recent years, especially, the growing stress accorded to democratic governance is changing our perceptions of the nature and role of development.

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