Security & Development

When NGOs speak of “Development”, they use it as shorthand for human development - not just economic development or, narrower still, economic growth. 

Development is about reversing poverty and inequality, increasing the choices and opportunities available to poor people, and protecting their human rights. Development about working towards the realisation of justice, peace and an environment in which people can lead productive, creative lives. 

At its most basic level, Development requires the protection against immediate threats to survival. But Development also includes a component of going beyond “freedom from want” and “freedom from fear”, towards a third basic freedom: “Freedom to act on one’s own behalf.”

In this way, Development and Security are intrinsically linked. Over the years, Dóchas members have been using the concept of “Human Security”, to highlight these links, and to ensure that security policy is widened, to take account not just of the security of States, but of people and communities within those States. 

The security of States requires the security of all citizens and, inversely, the physical security of poor people requires the promotion of capable and accountable States that deliver security and justice for all citizens. And that means that we as NGOs advocate the need to understand the root causes of insecurity at local, national and regional levels, and the importance of enhancing social cohesion and inclusion, and promoting women’s empowerment.

Key resources