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Development as Freedomt

  • 04 Pages
  • Published On: 02-12-2023

Sustainable Human Security

Sustainable human security is a concept concerned with addressing and finding long-term solutions to various aspects of human security that threaten the key cores of human lives in order to uphold and promote human survival (freedom from fear), human development (freedom from want), human sustainability (freedom from vulnerability) and human dignity (freedom from shame). The notion underscores the above freedoms as fundamental to human lives and uses peace-building and sustainable human-rights based sustainable development as approaches to solving the root causes of conflict, economic, environmental, human and social insecurity. Through these approaches, the concept promotes a number of aspects relating to the proposed fundamental freedoms.


Freedom from vulnerability: economic, environmental, and social sustainability, good governance, and community resilience Freedom from fear: personal, security, political, national, community and public security Freedom from want: economic, educational, food, health and environmental security Freedom from shame: cultural diversity, human rights, equality and fairness, democratic participation, decent work

Development as Freedom

According to Sen (1999), development is seen as a process through which people’s freedoms are enhanced. This is because for development to be seen as happening, certain situations (which are considered sources of unfreedom) must be removed. They include: poverty, poor economic opportunities, social deprivation, tyranny, neglect of public facilities, repression and intolerance, among others. The removal of these unfreedoms, would result in the promotion of 5 major types of freedom- political freedom, social opportunities, economic facilities, protective security and transparency guarantees. These freedoms are considered to be core to the development process as well as serve to make development important.

Reasons Freedom is Central to Development

There are two key reasons that make freedom central to the development process:

Evaluation: it facilitates the assessment of progress made with regard to whether the freedoms enjoyed by people are enhanced (or basic). Effectiveness: the realization of development is highly dependent on the free agency of people. Free agency is a component of development, and also strengthens other forms of free agencies.

Variables and Expected Causality

Growth (or the achievement of it) is influenced by several factors, including economic opportunities, social powers, political liberties, basic education, good health, and encouragement. It is also influenced by people’s exercise of freedoms such as freedom of: speech, religion, domestic movement, international movement, association and assembly, electoral self-determination, and workers’ rights. These substantive freedoms connect with and strengthen one another.

Human development factors (e.g. adequate social opportunities) enable people to help one another and effectively shape their destiny.of products innovation and use of commonly supplied raw materials.

Political freedom and stability, and the absence of conflict also contributes to economic growth

Various economic factors, for example trade and investment, freedom of exchange,freedom to enter markets, transactions if promoted positively influence developmen

Institutions and organizations, and how they are governed influence development- institutional values, shared behaviors, presence or absence of corruption, etc. influence development either negatively or positively.

Governments (and type of governance) determine economic growth, e.g. democracy is likely to result in increased development.

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Individuals’ initial income levels also predict development- low income potentially results in people focusing less on political and social freedom, and leading poor quality lives that hinder them from fully achieving their potential.


Sen, A., 2014. Development as freedom (1999). The globalization and development reader: Perspectives on development and global change, 525.

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