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Economia e Sociedade

Print version ISSN 0104-0618On-line version ISSN 1982-3533


MACHADO, João Guilherme Rocha  and  PAMPLONA, João Batista. The UN and economic development: an interpretation on the theoretical basis of the UNDP’s action. Econ. soc. [online]. 2008, vol.17, n.1, pp.53-84. ISSN 0104-0618.

The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) is an important body of the United Nations for development issues. It is also responsible for the construction and publication of the Human Development Index (HDI). The UNDP is present in more than 166 countries and exerts an influence on the theory and practice of economic development. It is very important to define the elements which allow the establishment of limits to the UNDP’s action. The purpose of this paper is to identify, classify and critically explain the theoretical basis for the paradigm of human development, on which its line of work has been based. The capabilities approach developed by Amartya Sen is the theoretical basis for the paradigm of human development. This approach is very convenient for the pragmatic and consensual nature of the UNDP’s action because it proposes a greater focus on the expansion of individual capabilities, but without calling for structural changes in the international economic order.

Keywords : Sen, Amartya Kumar; Economic development; Human development; UN; UNDP.

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