Using Named Examples, Assess the Advantages and Disadvantages of Top Down and Bottom Up Development Strategies

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Using named examples, assess the advantages and disadvantages of top down and bottom up development strategies (15 marks) Development is the ways in which a country seeks to develop economically and to improve the standards of living for its inhabitants. Numerous development strategies both top down and bottom up can be used by countries to help them progress. However, while these may be advantageous in certain areas, not all strategies are as effective everywhere and thus problems can arise with top down and bottom up development schemes. Top down strategies are generally capital-intensive and often conducted by the government. The main criticism of these schemes is the fact that the money which is supposedly meant to aid the poorest people in the country who are most in need is actually diverted to those who are richer instead. This is apparent through some of the major failures of the structural adjustment programmes which are loans lent to countries that are in extremely desperate situations. Benin for example, has endured severe economic instability, partly due to the SAP provided to the country as it encouraged them to export the raw materials they had instead of manufacturing them. This essentially prevented the country from developing its economy as ultimately jobs were provided in manufacturing elsewhere. This loan led to a widening in the gap between the rich and the poor which became increasingly apparent due to Benin accepting the SAP. Another key problem with top down development strategies is the fact that they look for large scale solutions rather than directing their schemes to the specific needs of the poor. By adopting these plans, this can reinforce the stigma that government only introduce these top down schemes for economic development as opposed to the requirements of the public. However, while there is definitive evidence of how top down
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