Rethinking Development Assistance: the implications of social citizenship in a global economy

Date: May, 1997
ODID Working Paper No. 1
Author(s): Valpy FitzGerald (ODID)

The emerging model for development assistance in the coming decades is based on supporting the full integration of developing countries into the global economy by correcting for failures in product and factor capital markets. 'Aid' as such would be confined to humanitarian emergencies and activities with large international externalities. However, without free labour movement, the logical implication of this approach is that citizenship itself becomes an economic asset.

This model contrasts sharply with the notion of development assistance based on resource transfers to the most vulnerable countries or social groups as a form of 'social entitlement' in a global market. Such minimal entitlements can be derived from accepted principles of the theory of justice and are implied by international law. However, this model of global social citizenship would also logically imply a corresponding system of international taxation. Despite the dominance of the first model, some trends in the international political economy may favour the second.

ODID Author(s)