Redefining ‘international development’

I’ve been thinking a lot about the term ‘international development’ and what it truly means. In fact, scrap that. I’ve been thinking more about what it means to different people and from different perspectives and the potential for what it COULD mean.

So according to the Oxford English Dictionary (OED) the definition of international is:

“existing, constituted, or carried on between different nations; pertaining to the relations between nations.”

and of development is:

“the process or fact of developing; the concrete result of this process.”

So…why is it that when you put these two words together the meaning suddenly become (According to the Cambridge Business English Dictionary – it doesn’t exist in the OED):

a country with little industrial and economic activity and where people generally have low incomes.

I would like to redefine ‘international development’ (and therefore the intention and everything that goes with it) as:

A global system of equality and interdependence, where nations, organisations and citizens respect each other, collaborate, share and support each other to collectively reach their highest potential and regenerate the planet.

What do you think? Can you improve? How would you like to redefine ‘international development’? Let me know!


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