Helping People Help Themselves

Helping People Help ThemselvesThe full title to this book is: Helping People Help Themselves: From the World Bank to an Alternative Philosophy of Development Assistance. The book is an interdisciplinary analysis, giving a full history of the relevant ideas, of the various modes of “helping” in general and development assistance in particular. The interdisciplinary analysis is very much in the style of the late Albert Hirschman who wrote the Foreword. The main case study is the World Bank where I spent a decade learning about its modes of operation from the inside. The book is intended to lay the foundations for an alternative approach. The book is still in print and is available in paperback in all the usual online booksellers.

From the backcover blurb:

“A towering achievement. It outdoes Sen and Hirshman in its reach across economics, management theory, psychology, sociology, mathematics and philosophy. The result is a coherent alternative “way of seeing” the relationship between aid organizations based in rich countries and aid recipients based in poorer ones, and some practical suggestions on how to reengage the aid agencies more as “helpers” than as “doers”. Along the way it fairly sizzles with insider insights into the workings of the World Bank.”

—Robert Hunter Wade, Development Studies Institute, London School of Economics

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