How Development Is Defined


Development is a process that involves changing certain aspects of life. It can be a slow or fast process and it usually includes growth. This is why it is important to look at the various areas that have to be improved and develop them accordingly. Mostly, organizations come forward and invest heavily in these areas hence making them grow and make the economy of the country grow.

Development can be defined in different ways and it is a very complex topic to discuss. It involves a lot of factors and a wide range of disciplines such as psychology, sociology, biology, history, economics, political science, and more. It has become an important subject that is widely discussed in many countries and in different forums.

Mechanistic meta-theory: Mechanistic theories of development use a machine as a metaphor for the human body and mind. They assume that humans change the same way that machines do, and are passively controlled by environmental forces (like a car is controlled by its gas pedal or brake). They also assume that human development is linear—people move from one stage to the next in a fixed order.

Continuity versus Discontinuity: Some developmental theorists, such as Freud, Erikson, Piaget, and Kohlberg, believe that people progress through distinct stages in a predictable order. These stages are known as discontinuous development. Other theorists, such as Vygotsky and information processing theorists, assume that development is a continuous process.

During the 20th century, development was generally understood as “the process of change operating over time through which countries and societies advance and become richer.” More recently, development has been defined as “achieving high levels of nutrition, sanitation, education, incomes, medical services, living standards, and encouraging people to fulfill their potential.” The UN defines development as “a continuous, expanding process that allows all regions to meet their basic needs and to achieve social justice.” These goals are achieved by increasing access to food, water, shelter, sanitation, energy, medical care, and education.