Introduction Anders Norman and David Simon
This was the confidence with which the rich world embarked on a massive programme of development assistance fifty years ago. Aid was intended to give the poor the impetus to help themselves out of their misery. In a retrospective reflection written shortly before the end of the century, the Development Assistance Committee (DAC), the main aid coordinating body of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, which represents the rich countries of the world, gives a somewhat contradictory picture. While focusing on some of the historic changes taking place in some parts of the Third World, it also notes that
These impressive strides have not been uniform. In some countries poverty is increasing and in many countries the poor have not shared in the positive global trends described above.