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Liberation and Development

May 5th, 2004 · No Comments

Atanu Dey writes:

Power, credit, and knowledge are the basic ingredients for the recipe that liberates. The utility of liberation is expressed in the Zeroth Law of Development which is that liberation is a pre-condition for development. Without freedom of thought and action, nothing of value can be accomplished. At its core, development is about freedom — economic, political, religious, … ad infinitum. Casual empiricism bears out that law: where these freedoms are missing, development is absent. If you really insist on it, check out the human development indicies of countries and you would notice that countries that are in economic, political, and religious shackles are not developed.

I would like to now outline my argument here:

1. Energy, credit, and knowledge are the basic ingredients for liberation.
2. Liberation is a precondition for development.
3. So if one wishes to bring about development, one has to assure the availability of energy, credit, and knowledge.

I will argue that underdeveloped countries have to struggle so hard to become developed because they are deficient in some or all of the three essential ingredients of liberation. I will further argue that it is possible to bootstrap the process of development but only if resources are used efficiently and if problems are solved by addressing causes rather than by alleviating superficial effects. Finally, I would address the question of the use of information and communications technologies for development. The point that I would discuss is that knowledge is the active agent of transformation. ICT, as the name implies, is technology that is concerned with information, and not knowledge directly. Not keeping the distinction between knowledge and information leads to confused thinking and ultimately immense waste of resources.

Tags: Deeshaa (Rural Development)

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