It has been said that ending extreme poverty and achieving genuine development are possible but not inevitable and that this gives the study of economic development its moral and intellectual urgency. What is meant by this? Comment and evaluate


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Didge Doo Profile
Didge Doo , on, answered

You'll need to do your own thinking about this or the exercise will be valueless to you. Consider researching a variety of the world's nations with a view to the wealth of the nation, the number of people living below the poverty line, the GDP, and so on. Especially, compare those places where the poor live on the streets (consider Brazil's effort to sweep them under the carpet during the Olympics) with those nations who provide for their unfortunates.

It might also be worth looking at the distribution of wealth in Catholic countries and the Islamic theocracies with vast oil wealth which doesn't find its way down the food chain.

I'm not sure if this link will help in your particular case, but the CIA's World Fact Book provides much statistical data on all the world's nations.

Virginia Lou Profile
Virginia Lou answered

Dear Lawrence Mleya,

These comments are to supplement Didge's response for you...this is how I would approach your assignment:

1. Make certain that you have 'extreme poverty' and 'genuine development' fully defined. That is, extreme poverty not only less than $1.25 per day income, but also lack of access to basic services. And, genuine development to include the GPI, Genuine Progress Indicator, which reflects extreme poverty.

2. Then, discuss the progress already achieved...the United Nations Millennium Development Goal 1 (MDG1), to reduce extreme poverty by half, and how that was accomplished by 2010, five years early.

3. Discussion of moral imperative, as "a strongly-felt principle that compels a person to act." If you wish, you could even bring in the philosophy, for instance Immanuel Kant and his Categorical Imperative.

4. Show how that human imperative operated in MDG1, and from there, the likelihood of completing the UN goal of eliminating extreme poverty by 2030. For me, I might not spend too much time on the intellectual part because it seems so clear that we DO have the intellectual capacity for this.

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