24. FOOD FOR NGO’S DEEP THOUGHTS. »

In the 2001 World Development Report devoted to poverty, it is stated that there are limits to a micro-level approach to poverty, and a macro-level approach is advocated for.

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23. ON STATISTICS.* »

Statistics create subjects; they tell stories and shape cultures. Over the past five decades, development practitioners have prided themselves on successfully creating more sophisticated ways to measure and compare. Statistics have become crucial, if not the most crucial of, development tools.

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22. VARIATIONS ON A THEME BY THE CHILEAN WRITER ISABEL ALLENDE. »

Some of us have for too long lived surrounded by four walls, in an immutable environment, where time rolls in circles and the line of the horizon where we are heading to in our work is barely perceptible. We have grown up professionally inside an impenetrable armor of good manners and conventionality.

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21. ON MORALITY, FREEDOM, CHOICES, JUSTICE AND THE NEED FOR PEOPLE’S POWER. »

In development work, living without a cause is living without a reason to be.As opposed to those who do not, those of us who have choices ought to have morals.

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20. ON DEVELOPMENT, THE REAL WORLD, POWER GAMES AND THE UGLY FACES OF GREED »

Words no longer make much of an impression on many of us. You can take what follows any way you please: as a 'cri du coeur', as a lament or as an ode to hope. I look at it as one way to come closer to the truth about what I do. I will admit to one feeling though -- a faint feeling of anger; I foster it because it keeps me warm.

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19. HEALTH SECTOR REFORM AND THE UNMET NEEDS OF THE POOR: A CRITIQUE »

I have been re-reading some of the Health Sector Reform (HSR) and health and poverty literature. I have been amazed by the ambiguity, lack of clarity and of a sense of direction, and even some misconceptions I have found in an otherwise serious literature.

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18. SOME PEARLS OF WISDOM ABOUT HEALTH CARE FINANCING. »

Equity in health means equal access for equal need. Near-zero-priced public services for the poor is an essential public policy towards equity. Government intervention in the inequitable workings of the free market is required to bring about equity in health. The problem of resource shortages in the health sector cannot thus be seen as only a sectoral problem.

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17. ELEMENTS FOR A HUMAN RIGHTS ACTIVISTS COURSE AND CURRICULUM. »

Many of our fellow development professionals are not satisfied with the training future generations of our colleagues are receiving. Quite a few have been vocal about it and discussions have ensued for the last few years. More recently, a sizable part of the discussion has centered around the mix of technical and other skills Human Rights advocates need to acquire given the challenges they are sure to face in their future careers. Not much of the content of this discussion has found its way into concrete changes in the curricula of schools that train different types of future development workers.

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16. SHORT DISCUSSION TOPICS »

Capacity/accountability analyses (that tell us why duty bearers at many levels do not seem to be able to perform their duties as expected) are a cornerstone of Human Rights planning.

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15. ARGUMENTS IN FAVOR OF AN EMPOWERING COMMUNITY CAPACITY BUILDING IN HEALTH »

The notion of duty and justice (...and not compassion!) give rights their cutting edge. Power is the key relation in health and Human Rights issues: A right confers power, i.e. the power to make key changes as far reaching as the system allows claim holders to do so.

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