Economic Development

LOCAL DEVELOPMENT IN INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION


Abstract


The session aimed at investigating the relationship between cooperation and local development practices in the Global South. Theoretically as well as at the level of development cooperation policies and strategies, a reconfiguration of the reference scales at which the very idea of development is conceptualized has been taking place since the Seventies. The context is that of the process of reorganization of the international politico-economic system that began in those years, which also encouraged the social sciences to adopt new perspectives in analyzing and interpreting social phenomena and economic processes. Alongside the essentially aspatial and macroeconomic approaches which remain dominant to this day,  an attention to the local dimensions of development has gradually gained ground, moving  from somewhat subterranean beginnings to its current prominence. This reconfiguration is very much part of the considerations that have matured since the early Eighties regarding the crisis that swept through the field of development studies and the post-impasse debate that has enlivened the subsequent decades. In this context, local development has steadily become more and more central to development policies, starting with a number of Northern countries in the Eighties, and explicitly emerging in the developing countries since the second half of the Nineties.


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