Wednesday, September 29, 2010
While anyone can be vulnerable, the poor and the near poor are particularly at risk because they have fewer assets, reserves, or other opportunities to fall back on during natural and artificial negative uncertainties.
World trends in development action are aimed primarily to reduce the incidence of poverty and promote sustainable development. However, the achievement of this goal starts with the understanding of the causes of poverty. Poverty translates into hunger, high incidence of diseases, inaccessibility to social services, increase risks and insecurity. In a broader perspective, poverty can be defined to mean the absence or loss of livelihood security or a situation where a person is exposed to risks and shocks leading to the erosion of his livelihoods. This is because “a livelihood comprises the capabilities, assets (including both material and social resources) and activities required for a means of living” (Conway and Conway 1992). Consequently, poverty results from the loss of livelihoods or the breakdown of the livelihood support, i.e. poverty results from a situation where the means of protecting citizens against loss of income, food, education, health, shelter, etc. breaks down. While anyone can be vulnerable, the poor and the near poor are particularly at risk because they have fewer assets, reserves, or other opportunities to fall back on (ADB 2007). This realization has a direct impact on poverty reduction both in view of how we protect citizens from falling below critical poverty; and how we can help in mitigating and coping with social and other risks (Morduch 1999).
Friday, September 24, 2010
The realisation that man is central to development action and interventionism marks the beginning of poverty reduction and sustianbale deevelopment. Without this realisation, development becomes an illusion and subjective only to the values and norms of the planning technician.
The success of development planning in Ghana is dependent on the capacity of development practitioners most especially in the public sector at the local, regional and national level to identify the needed interventions to be initiated for the upward movement of the entire human environment. Human resources are the people who do the work that helps organizations fulfill their missions (Schermerhorn 2002). They posess in sum knowledge, expertise, and energy available to promote organizational effectiveness, efficiency and sustainability. The human resource of any organisation is indispensable to an organization's development as they are the actors whose knowledge and performance advance the organization’s purpose, mission, and strategies.
Promoting effective development planning in Ghana therefore demands the availability of individuals whose capacities have been developed to understand the intricacies of development. These persons must be able to appreciate the nature of the process of development to which human beings or societies are entitled to freedom and welfare or upward shifts in their standard of living and also identify this process as the ultimate aim of development planning.
Development planning is an integrative and comprehensive process of conscious actions about the decisions of resource utilization to meet the needs and aspirations of people in a sustainable manner. Currently development actions and interventionism have shifted from a solely economic perspective to a much broader, integrative and participatory processes. Similarly, development planning has also shifted from a “conscious effort on the part of government to follow a definite pattern of economic development in order to promote rapid and fundamental change in the economy and society” (Weitz, 1986) to an integrated approach that recognizes planning as a conscious effort on the part of government to promote quantitative and qualitative improvements in the standard of living of the citizenry by building cross-sectoral linkages and participatory interventions.