One of the major factors in the current concern about what has been achieved from the two or three decades of central planning in many underdeveloped countries derives from the ambiguity surrounding the word ‘development’. In the literature, the primary role of economic forces in bringing about the development of a society has often been taken as axiomatic, so that development and economic development have come to be regarded as synonymous. For some time also, it was unexceptionable to use economic development interchangeably with economic growth. This gave rise to a situation where a small and backward country could overnight become rich and ‘developed’ if it was fortunate in having a raw material such as petroleum which, as a result of a sudden upward change of price, became a tremendous earner of foreign exchange. Indeed, so confused had the situation become that Dudley Seers wondered whether, instead of worrying about brushing aside the web of fantasy and slipshoddedness surrounding the word ‘development’, we shouldn’t simply abolish its use and look for a better and less debased word. 1 None the less, for various reasons, he argued that a redefinition rather than an abolition was what was called for.