Global Governance for Human Development

1992 Occasional Paper
By Streeten, Paul

This essay looks at the world as a whole and examines what innovations are needed in order to enable all members of humankind to play their full role in society and to develop and exercise their talents. Our global society presents great opportunities, but also many obstacles, to the improvement of the human condition. International interdependence, about which so much is written and talked these days, can amount to the opening up of new worlds, but it can also mean the infliction of suffering by one nation on others. The state has become too big for the small things, and too small for the big things. The small things call for delegation downwards, to the local level, to participatory organisations, to decentralised decision-making, and to the market. The big things call for delegation upwards, for co-ordination between national policies or for transnational institutions. In examining the need for institutional reforms, the concern will always be their impact on the lives of individual human beings, their families, their neighbourhoods and their communities.