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Advancing Human DevelopmentTheory and Practice$
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Frances Stewart, Gustav Ranis, and Emma Samman

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780198794455

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198794455.001.0001

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The Politics of Progress in Human Development

The Politics of Progress in Human Development

(p.184) 8 The Politics of Progress in Human Development
Advancing Human Development

Frances Stewart

Gustav Ranis

Emma Samman

Oxford University Press

This chapter analyses approaches to understanding the politics underlying success and failure on human development, which are of critical importance for progress, as shown in earlier chapters. It draws on Polanyi’s analysis of a long-term swing of a pendulum between emphasis on markets and emphasis on social objectives, and on theories of social movements and social change, for example put forward by Tarrow and Tilly. It illustrates the relevance of both these approaches with empirical examples. The chapter contends that democracy is a permissive condition, providing space for collective action (social movements, workers’ movements action, and political parties) to promote change favouring human development. The chapter also discusses how far politics has been incorporated into the human development and capabilities approaches, considering and critiquing the view that what is needed is a ‘democratic consensus’.

Keywords:   social movements, politics, human development, capabilities, consensus, collective action, democracy

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