Although the training is quite intensive, many sessions we get are interesting too. During three three-hour sessions, roughly running from 9am till 9pm with breaks for lunch and dinner, we are bombarded with cultural, political, economic and other information, related to developing nations and their relationship with the ‘North’.
Today, we had two very interesting sessions. Our morning session was led by C. van Beuningen on ‘sociocide’. Van Beuningen posed the question if developing nations and Africa in particular would have been better off without all the development aid of the past 40 years.
After dinner, R. Ruben, a professor at Wageningen University and also, at times, working for the World Bank, held a lucid plea in favor of commercializing development ‘aid’. He believed that, within ten years, development work as we know it will cease to exist. Not only will governments of developed nations sponsor developing countries with lump sums, not related to particular projects, most of the actual development projects will be replaced by commercial projects, initiated by businesses.