Global Policy Forum

Poverty and Development



Picture Credit: International Council on Social Welfare

Billions of people across the globe live in squalid conditions of hunger, disease, and desperation. This pandemic poverty represents the world's most pernicious and deadly scourge. Yet for the privileged minority, the horrors of poverty seem to be a natural, inevitable part of the geopolitical landscape. Leaders in the developed world profess their commitment to "poverty eradication," but none are willing to address the systemic causes of poverty. Furthermore, the political and corporate elites at the helm of the world economy have a powerful interest in maintaining the economic status quo.

Multilateral institutions devoted to "development" overwhelmingly adhere to neoliberal growth oriented strategies of capital accumulation, privatization, and investment. These institutions, including the World Bank, consistently ignore evidence that growth does not necessarily alleviate poverty and may, in fact, exacerbate it. Many concerned NGOs promote small-scale social development programs in poor countries, but as long as systemic economic and social policies continue to favor the rich, global poverty will remain a stark reality for the majority of people in the world.

General Analysis on Poverty and Development

This page posts information on policies to eliminate poverty and promote development.

Poverty and Development in Africa

This page posts information on policies to eliminate poverty and promote development in Africa.

Health, Poverty and Development

This page addresses links between poverty, health and development that affect political, social, and economic issues on a global scale.

Economic Growth and the Quality of Life

This page posts articles and analytical papers on the distinction between economic growth, as measured by GDP, and the quality of life, which embraces broader aspects of well-being like infant mortality, education, nutrition, and life expectancy.

Development, Democracy, and Human Rights

This page provides information on the relationship between economic growth, on the one hand, and democracy, human rights, and responsive governance on the other.

The Millennium Summit and Its Follow-Up

This page provides comprehensive information on the UN Millennium Summit in 2000 and its Follow-Up Summit in 2005. In 2000, hundreds of heads of state ratified the UN Millennium Declaration and promised to meet a number of "Millennium Development Goals."

Financing for Development

This page contains information on the different ways to mobilize finances for development, including debt relief, international aid and global taxes.

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