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Development in Srilanaka

  • Date Submitted: 11/01/2014 05:58 PM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 39.8 
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CHAPTER ONE

What is ‘Development’?

‘Development’ is a concept which is contested both theoretically and politically, and is inherently both complex and ambiguous … … Recently [it] has taken on the limited meaning of the practice of development agencies, especially in aiming at reducing poverty and the Millennium Development Goals. (Thomas, 2004: 1, 2) The vision of the liberation of people and peoples, which animated development practice in the 1950s and 1960s has thus been replaced by a vision of the liberalization of economies. The goal of structural transformation has been replaced with the goal of spatial integration.… … The dynamics of long-term transformations of economies and societies [has] slipped from view and attention was placed on short-term growth and re-establishing financial balances. The shift to ahistorical performance assessment can be interpreted as a form of the post-modernization of development policy analysis. (Gore, 2000: 794–5) Post-modern approaches… see [poverty and development] as socially constructed and embedded within certain economic epistemes which value some assets over others. By revealing the situatedness of such interpretations of economy and poverty, post-modern approaches look for alternative value systems so that the poor are not stigmatized and their spiritual and cultural ‘assets’ are recognized. (Hickey and Mohan, 2003: 38) One of the confusions, common through development literature is between development as immanent and unintentional process… … and development as an intentional activity. (Cowen and Shenton, 1998: 50) If development means good change, questions arise about what is good and what sort of change matters… Any development agenda is value-laden… … not to consider good things to do is a tacit surrender to… fatalism. Perhaps the right course is for each of us to reflect, articulate and share our own ideas… accepting them as provisional and fallible. (Chambers, 2004: iii, 1–2) Since [development] depend[s] on...

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