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close this bookPrevention of Drug Abuse through Education and Information: An Interdiscplinary Responsibility Within the Context of Human Development (EC - UNESCO, 1994, 26 p.)
close this folderINTRODUCTION
View the document(introduction...)
View the documentOn the importance of preventive education
View the documentOn the priority of the concept of human development
View the documentOn the importance of interdisciplinarity

On the priority of the concept of human development

Human development is a process of enlarging peoples choices. In principle, these choices can be infinite and change over time. But, at all levels of development the three essential ones are for people to lead a long and healthy life, to acquire knowledge and to have access to resources needed for a decent standard of living. Human development is an ideological concept, based on the premise that it is rightful to promote social progress. To quantify and clarify the process of human development a new yardstick of human progress, the Human Development Index (HDI) was formulated which, through the medium of indicators which combine the purchasing power of countries with those of the Health and Education sectors, thus offering a much more comprehensive measure of development than Gross National Product (GNP) alone.

The Human Development Index (HDI) classifies different countries with very interesting results for the introduction of programmes and policies at local, regional, national and international levels, and particularly so far as drug abuse is concerned. (6) As yet, the qualitative dimensions of development, and socio-cultural variables, are perhaps not sufficiently taken into account at the local and community levels. Whence the importance of education which intersects all domains - from the cognitive to the affective - and of preventive education which, based on local, municipal, community and regional realities is, also, an element in human development. It is quite clear that, through preventive education, the living conditions of populations can be improved if their needs for education and health are taken into account. Without this, other opportunities remain inaccessible.

(6) For further information, see "Human Development Report", 1993