water from well USAID/Flickr

De beste manieren om de extreme armoede te bestijden

KOPENHAGEN – In 1950 verdienden de mensen in Zuid-Korea en Pakistan jaarlijks ruwweg dezelfde hoeveelheid geld. Vandaag de dag zijn de twee landen nauwelijks nog vergelijkbaar. Sinds 1950 is het inkomen per hoofd van de bevolking in Zuid-Korea drieëntwintig maal zo hoog geworden, terwijl in Pakistan slechts een verdrievoudiging van dat inkomen heeft plaatsgevonden.

Hoe we meer van de armste landen ter wereld kunnen helpen het succes van Zuid-Korea na te bootsen is een van de belangrijkste vragen waar de wereld vandaag de dag voor staat. Betere economische resultaten houden in dat hele bevolkingen erin slagen een betere gezondheidstoestand te bereiken, meer onderwijs te genieten, een langer leven te leiden en minder kwetsbaar te zijn voor problemen als natuurrampen.

Een groot deel van de voorgestelde 169 ontwikkelingsdoelstellingen van de Verenigde Naties voor de komende vijftien jaar gaan, op de keper beschouwd, over het terugdringen van armoede. Maar niet alle doelstellingen zijn even goed. Het Copenhagen Consensus Center, waarvan ik directeur ben, heeft onlangs zestig teams van economen gevraagd de voor- en nadelen van deze voorgestelde doelstellingen te evalueren, voordat zij in september van kracht worden ter vervanging van de Millennium Ontwikkelingsdoelstellingen.

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