This essay provides information about the trends of development:
Development is always deliberated with economic connotations and it is referred to as an increase in the gross national product or in per capita income. In this understanding, development is equated with growth and it is envisioned that a quantum increase in the production of goods and services would bring development.
It was also assumed that the trickledown effect of growth would lead to an equitable sharing of benefits resources and opportunities in society. This process of development, however, has not been able to yield the desired result to humanity, especially in the developing countries. Development pattern of the past few decades have shown the following trends:
The high Gross National Product (GNP) growth of the fast growing developing countries has failed to reduce the socio-economic deprivation of substantial sections of their population. High income for the industrialised countries has not been able to provide protection against the rapid spread of social concerns like drug addiction and alcoholism, AIDs, homelessness, violence and the breakdown of family relations.
Significantly, some low-income countries have demonstrated that it is possible to achieve a high level of human development if they skillfully use the available means to expand basic human capabilities. Against this backdrop, there has been a perceptive shift in conceptualising development. The realisation is that economic growth is essential for humanity but it should be seen only as a means to improve human choices.
The essential truth that people must be at the centre of all development can be stabilised in this process. The purpose of development is to offer people more options. One of their options is access to income – not as an end in itself but as a means of acquiring human well being. But there are other options as well, including long life, knowledge, political freedom, personal security, community participation and guaranteed human rights.
People cannot be reduced to a single dimension as an economic creature. What makes them and the. Study of development process fascinating is the entire spectrum through which human capacities are expanded and utilised. It is no realised that people are the real wealth of a nation that the basic objective of development is to create enabling environment for the people to enjoy Ion healthy and creative lives and that the statistical aggregates to measure national income and its growth have at times obscured the fact that the primary objective of development is to benefit people.