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The Brandt Report OVERVIEW

The best selling book to date on International Development issues, the Brandt Report is a broad based analysis of the state of the world, with a necessary emphasis on the failure of the world economic system to provide social and economic equality for humanity. It highlights the economic trends that need to be reversed, and solutions and strategies that need to be urgently implemented if the growing income disparity of the Northern and Southern Hemispheres, financial and economic instability as well as the growing problem of poverty is ever to be tackled.

Comprised of a remarkable group of accomplished, international leaders and statesmen, the commission emphasize the mutual interest for developed and developing countries to deal with, once and for all, the burning issues of our time, in order for humanity to survive the “immense risks threatening mankind”.

Cooperation was the tool to create change and facilitate world wide growth and development, the main objective of development being “to lead to self-fulfillment and creative partnership in the use of a nation’s productive forces and its full human potential”. To enforce one nation’s model of development onto another was deemed unnecessary.

The commission wanted to make it quite clear that the world CANNOT carry on as if it is “Business as Usual”. Their aim was to “…organize as rapidly as possible…an international meeting at the highest level…to discuss North – South emergency matters and…to reach agreements as concrete as possible, on how to turn certain mutual interests into creative partnerships, immediately and for the longer term.”

Above all the report was an appeal to all world leaders and people from every strata of life to participate in the shaping of our common future.

From Wikipedia:

The Brandt Report is the report written by the Independent Commission, first chaired by Willy Brandt (the former German Chancellor) in 1980, to review international development issues. The result of this report provided an understanding of drastic differences in the economic development for both the North and South hemispheres of the world:

“A new century nears, and with it the prospects of a new civilization. Could we not begin to lay the basis for that new community with reasonable relations among all people and nations, and to build a world in which sharing, justice, freedom and peace might prevail? (Willy Brandt 1983)”

The Brandt Report suggests primarily that a great chasm in standard of living exists along the North-South divide and there should therefore be a large transfer of resources from developed to developing countries. The countries North of the divide are extremely wealthy due to their successful trade in manufactured goods, whereas the countries South of the divide suffer poverty due to their trade in intermediate goods, where the export incomes are low. The Brandt Commission envisaged a new kind of global security. It built its arguments on a pluralist perspective that combines several social, economic and political perils together with classical military perils.