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Growth, Poverty, and Educational Insecurity in the Niger Delta: A Causal Analysis

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In the oil-rich Niger Delta the three dimensions of exclusion – social, economic, and political – have systematically uprooted millions. Solutions must be sought in a framework of development with focus on non-market measures. The most important challenge of government is how to incorporate, reenfranchise and empower the marginalized and excluded people of the Niger Delta. Meeting this challenge requires an understanding of the processes of inequalities and historical evolution, inadequacies of the failed neoliberal economic model. The IFAD/UNDP non-market approach considers these factors in analysing the present crisis and emphasizes participation and ownership achieved through quality education that promotes human development with sustainable development in the Niger Delta. The lesson is that even with new economic growth, the necessities of ownership cannot be fostered simply with markets. In this vein, building on the strength and values of stakeholders is about enlarging their opportunities to pursue developmental goals that they value, both collectively and as individuals, motivating them to play their roles as stewards of their destiny and holders of unique cultural heritages. Poverty cannot be resolved simply by developing economic opportunities. It must be addressed within the poverty zone by focusing on participation and empowerment, building human and productive assets and incorporating the poor into a development path they value – quality education is the core of that difference.
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Keywords: Niger Delta; educational poverty; human development; non-market development; participation; poverty

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Brigham Young University

Publication date: 2008-01-01

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  • Political Crossroads is a bi-annual, international, refereed journal which, since 1990, publishes critical and empirical scholarship in political science and international relations. Its areas of focus include global security, terrorism, national identity, migration and citizenship, and the politics of resources and trade.
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