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Who Needs Reimagining? An Exploration of Who Can and Who Cannot and Why. Allister McGregor (with inputs from Sarah, Walcott, Lawrence Haddad and Naomi.

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Presentation on theme: "Who Needs Reimagining? An Exploration of Who Can and Who Cannot and Why. Allister McGregor (with inputs from Sarah, Walcott, Lawrence Haddad and Naomi."— Presentation transcript:

1 Who Needs Reimagining? An Exploration of Who Can and Who Cannot and Why. Allister McGregor (with inputs from Sarah, Walcott, Lawrence Haddad and Naomi Hossain) Presentation to DSA conference 2011, 5 th November

2 Who Needs Reimagining? Do we need to re-imagine development at this time? With the onset of financial crisis in 2008 there was a strong sense that the global development model was broken. Many declared that a new model for global development was required. These calls have receded have receded or moderated as the months have passed.

3 Who Can Reimagine? This presentation draws on the 24 study sites papers It explores where the need for reimagining was felt. It explores the conditions under which reimagining has been enabled or constrained

4 Who Needs Reimagining? 1.Where was the need to reimagine felt as a result of the financial crisis? 2.Where was the need to reimagine not felt? 3.Where was the need to reimagine felt, but not in relation to the financial crisis?

5 Value Dissonance The growing gap between personal values and professional development models and practice. Explicitly explored in the Sri Lanka and Ethiopia sites but identifiable in many sites and more broadly. New values: human centred, environmental/ climate change awareness, awareness of need for contextual detail – in contrast to GrowthPlus models and materialist lifestyle issues.

6 Contradictory Consciousness Where people act and make statements that illustrate value dissonance and that the current models with which they live their lives or conduct themselves professionally of are out of synch with present experiences or observations. Evident in the UK Site (public opinion survey ) -global interconnectedness and moral responsibility for the global poorest but need to focus on home affairs and home economy needs. Gujarat site - pressures of change evident but statements that no social change is needed.

7 Ideas, Interests and Institutions Ideas: there are plenty of new ideas around but not coherent as a challenge to development orthodoxy – not enough supportive infrastructure: Theory, Measures, Models of Practice For example, London, New York and INGO sites - aid professional perceived need for change but no ready models that they feel able to turn to.

8 Ideas, Interests and Institutions Interests: No substantial evidence of shifts in balance of interests. However, some evidence of increasing levels of dissent and open rejection of values systems associated with orthodox development values (Cairo site). Will new technology create new spaces for association amongst dissenting groups (Ether Site) Examples: Indonesia site - where flexibilised labour markets and firm resilience come at the cost of the wellbeing of marginal workers. Power - you cant easily reimagine where your threatened with losing your livelihood or life. Global Media site suggests that the media cannot be relied upon to spearhead reimagining because of their position in relation to the market and currently perceived balance of interests.

9 Ideas, Interests and Institutions Institutions: these range from norms through to societal institutions (how we normally do things) through to organisational forms that have meanings and norms embedded in them. A review of the various site papers allude that this is the area where change is most difficult. For example, New York (UN) site perceived need for change of UN system but no organisational means for that change available. Discomfort with growth but return to growthplus (growth with equity, growth with sustainability etc) models and the insidious emergence of resilience as the latest prop for the growth model. There are plenty of new ideas around but not coherent as challenge to development orthodoxy – not enough supportive infrastructure (e.g. London, New York, Ethiopia sites, aid professional perceive a need for change but have no institutional support for the change).

10 Observations Pretty much back to business as usual Developing countries apparently not as badly affected as had been feared Back-slapping that actually the macro- economic advice of development professionals worked The insidious use of resilience as a way of adding a new support to the old model.


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