From development to dignity: a profound challenge for international cooperation

‘Some people just don’t want to develop.’ During my years of work in international development I’ve heard this view expressed, implicitly or explicitly, by frustrated practitioners. It sounds bizarre, and demonstrates a monumental lack of empathy, but funnily enough it can often be right. Many communities don’t want to ‘develop’ according to someone else’s definition…

Making markets work for people: the importance of dignity in the economic arena

Our organization, MICAIA, works in different parts of Mozambique to help people achieve local prosperity. PSJP’s recent paper on ‘Dignity and Development’ looked at the concept of dignity in development and philanthropy and this occasioned me to reflect on our own approach to our work. MICAIA has chosen to build its theory of change, and our practices,…

Dignity reassessed: From old-school grantmaker to local philanthropy enthusiast

PSJP’s recently published paper on ‘Dignity and Development’ looks at the concept of dignity in development and philanthropy. At the Zambian Governance Foundation for Civil Society (ZGF) this paper provided us with an opportunity to revisit our own journey from a dignity lens. In this blog post we would like to share the practices at…

The Dignity Project, a campaign for more respectful development

Is your program respectful? How, exactly, do you know that? Did you ask people? Development is frequently disrespectful. We all want to do better. But right now we don’t have the tools to do so. The Dignity Project creates open access, ready-translated tools to properly measure respect. There is public support for more respectful development.…

The strange case of dignity

We need to build the capacity of actors on the ground to deliver an empowering strategy for users and beneficiaries, while satisfying the needs of multiple stakeholders, so that we can deliver our sustainable goals in accord with our vision and mission to foster human dignity. I wrote the above sentence in a 20-second stream…

Dignity and Development

This paper looks at the idea of ‘dignity’ and forms part of PSJP’s series on ‘defining key concepts’ in development and philanthropy. The 1948 Declaration of Human Rights enshrined dignity as the central goal of development, yet the term is not clearly defined, which makes it difficult to pursue and impossible to measure. Different people…