Over the week I am going to describe the course content and use this space to reflect on the impact it has on my thinking and hopefully at the end of the sessions I will have come to an informed position on ‘development’ . Twenty eight persons who I will come to know better were welcomed to Catherine House by Joe, Anne and Celia the course presenters.
The first session was setting the scene by introducing a framework and the vocabulary to talk about ‘Development ‘ . The framework being:
1. From what – what is the problem?
2. To what– what is the goal?
3. By what – how are we going to get from one to the other.
The problem being poverty, but an interesting distinction was made between absolute poverty were people lack life basic income/resources to sustain life and relative poverty, were income/resources are related to the average and people are not able to participate fully in accepted daily life. Though assumption laden, particuarly the second definition, I found them helpful as they are less clumsy than what I had previously used.
So having established poverty as the problem, and the goal being to alleviate poverty, we were then introduced to a range of perspectives on how to move to the goal. This is very much tied up with how one views the causes of poverty.
But that is for the next post. As always any thoughts you have that would help the thinking would be warmly received.