The United Nations Development Goals (SDD)

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The United Nations Development Programme (2015) posits that the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) is a set of developmental priorities aimed at ending poverty, protecting the planet and ensuring that all people enjoy peace and prosperity. Having been recently established, since January 2016, as successor to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), the SDGs are deemed to be very ambitious. Unlike the SDGs, the MDGs were deemed to be narrow in focus as there were only eight (8) goals which often bypassed the poorest and disadvantaged. It was speculated that this was due to their age, gender, disability and ethnicity. World Economic Forum’s Editor, Stephanie Thomson (2015), shared that the SDGs were agreed upon by one hundred
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According to Escobar (1995), the expansion of developmentalism came about from the inaugural speech of the United States of America’s President Harry Truman in 1949 who strongly believes that the USA and Europe should assist the underdeveloped countries in solving their problems, hence achieve development. However, Escobar (1995) goes on further to share that the thought was embraced by those in power and was also underscored by a group of experts who were working with the United Nations at the time. It is works of scholars such as Arturo Escobar that has contributed immensely to subsequent critiques of the phenomena of development. Prosser (2010) in her contributions to the discussions surrounding the school of thought of development cited Escobar (1995) and Matthews (2004) that the term of development was taken to mean a social change or transformation that will better the lives of people in a specific society. According to Matthews (2004), post-development theorists had a different view of development as being obsolete and that it did more harm than good as Piertese (2000) quoted Latouche (1993) as referring to development as westernization. Development has been and still is the Westernisation of the world (Latouche, 1993) – imposing western lifestyles. This Prosser (2010) believes is the hidden agenda of development from the onset. The problem with development is that it is external, based on the model…show more content…
The proponents characterize this concept on five (5) main tenets, the first of which is the interest in alternatives to development, not the interest of alternative development. Secondly, a fundamental rejection of the classical development paradigm, thirdly, an interest in local culture and local knowledge, fourthly, a critical perspective on established scientific discourses and lastly, solidarity for pluralistic grassroots movements (Escobar, 1995). Given these tenets, the theorists strongly believe that there is much value in local participatory mechanisms in problem identification and solving. This gives recognition to the strength and importance in community development, civil society and local government – all of which are part of the sub-national governance structure. Prosser (2010) underscores this point as it is a shared interest of the post-developmentalists in local culture and knowledge; a critical stance towards established scientific discourses; and the defense and promotion of localized, pluralistic grassroots and movements. Empowering the locals is essential to development as they seek to initiate change by looking to locals as guides to problems, but more importantly to
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