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Speaker(s): Professor Jan Pronk
Chair: Professor Tim Allen

Recorded on 16 February 2011 at The Box, Tower Three

The lectures honour the name of Kapuscinski, a Polish journalist and writer known as the Voice of the Poor, who died in 2007. The project is a joint initiative of the European Commission and the United Nations Development Programme.

Present challenges (such as climate change and economic dualism) are structural. They are larger than before. They last longer, not only because they are mutually related and reinforce each other, but also because they are not addressed coherently. However, we should be more concerned about the fact that we have dismantled our capacity to deal with those challenges, rather than by the challenges themselves.

Capacity innovation should serve the interest of in particular two categories of people. First, the poorest of the poor. In the production systems of today, which are primarily based on capital and technology, rather than people and nature, the poor are more exploited and excluded than in earlier phases of world capitalism. Second: the yet unborn, the future generations, our grand children and great-grand children. People in the underbelly of the world's economy and people that will come out of the shadows of the future have one thing in common: they do not have a voice. But they have a claim.

Jan Pronkis Professor Emeritus at the International Institute of Social Studies of the Erasmus University, The Hague.

Tim Allen is Professor in Development Anthropology at the Department of International Developmen at LSE.

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