Discussing Development Planning and the Capability Approach: Capturing Complexities and Safeguarding Participation.

Ferrero, Gabriel, Loma Osorio, and Alexandre Apsan Frediani (2009). "Discussing Development Planning and the Capability Approach: Capturing Complexities and Safeguarding Participation." Paper presented at the 6th annual conference of the HDCA, 10-12 September 2009, Lima, Peru.

In the field of Development Planning, since the end of the Second World War different strategies have been put forward to support the practice of development. Approaches have been elaborated and implemented, influenced by assumptions, pragmatic needs and underpinning conceptualizations of poverty and development. As international donors aim to increase their budgets for aid and the development industry become more concerned with the effectives of their programmes, the field of development planning has become increasingly important, by providing reflection and operational guidelines for practitioners in this industry. The tendencies in the new generation of tools from the field of development planning aims at capturing the multi dimensions of poverty, absorbing complexities of social realities while safeguarding participatory methods from its instrumental and limited application. However there is still a need for a conceptual framework that can address those tendencies while also being applicable for development initiatives. This paper hopes to contribute such debate by making the links between development planning literature and the Capability Approach. It aims to assess how far the Capability Approach can contribute to the theoretical discussions underpinning the new generation of development planning tools. Meanwhile, it hopes to contribute to the operationalization of the Capability Approach, by assessing particular tools from development planning literature that can support the application of the concept of capabilities in the practice of development.
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