Our Economic World Order An Ongoing Discrepancy Between Power And Wisdom

1688 words - 7 pages

“Our Economic World Order - an ongoing discrepancy between Power and Wisdom”

Observing the course of history, in regards to Human Rights and Development, and considering various statements by personages such as Peter Uvin and Amartya Sen, it is evident that the power play of the developed nations has had a decisive impact on the recognition and realization of Human Rights in Development, and the efficacy of Development in their regard.

Peter Uvin, in his work “Human Rights and Development”, drawing from the atrocities suffered by people in World War II, emphasized how, “economic development doesn’t automatically bring about peace and respect for human rights”. Thereafter, it seemed ...view middle of the document...

This approach as supported by Lewis, and adopted by a vast majority of prosperous nations, may well find a positive grounding in the light of Economic Development alone but beyond the numeric value of GDP, its overall efficacy and the benefits generated to society are dubious and unclear.

This unilateral approach has immediately encountered critique by Marxists, and Anti-Colonialists, such as Egyptian Economist Samir Amin, who blamed „‚central’ capitalist economies for integrating transitional economies of the ‚periphery’ into the world market in ways that permanently favor the former“. The efficacy of the economic growth approach to development has further been defeated by Measures such as the ‘Gini-Ceoefficient’, which in this regard portrayed the inequality of income distribution within nations, revealing high inequality in wealth in several countries where the value of economic growth would have suggested a significant improvement in wealth. Economist and Nobel Prize winner, Amartya Sen reflects this discrepancy in the very first page of his publication “Development as Freedom”, by highlighting that “despite the increase in overall opulence, the contemporary world denies elementary freedoms to vast numbers – perhaps even the majority – of people”.

Consequentially, given the pressure and evidence speaking against this unilateral type of economic world governance, it became predominantly clear that to attain effective development an economic perspective would not suffice but a human aspect was needed as well. The change envisioned circulated around the recognition and realization of Human Rights in the Development strategy, employed by domineering nations. In 1970 The UN General Assembly recognized this need for unity in their ‚International Development Strategy Declaration’, wherein “the ultimate purpose of development is to provide increasing opportunities to all people for a better life. Thus, concluding that qualitative and structural changes in the society must go hand in hand with rapid economic growth ... requiring a unified approach”.

At this point it seems as one could no longer deny for a multi-dimensional approach to be adopted and in fact, a multitude of Rights based approaches, such as the Human Welfare Approach or the Basic Needs Approach, weighing on the provision of Economic, Social and Cultural rights, have emerged. Each addressing the challenges of development beyond a numeric value, rectifying the classical model in a way that take into account the criticism that came from the anti-colonial and anti-capitalist critique, creating promising Human Rights frameworks for development. Despite these realizations and a wide publicized need for a change in attitude in regards to the respect and realization of Human Rights in Development, which have been, in one way or another, adopted in to the procedural approaches of Governments and their judicial systems as well as Non Governmental Organizations (NGO’s) and other...

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