New Partnership Announced to Establish an International Centre for Human Development in India

22 Aug 2012

image (Left to Right) Lise Grande, United Nations Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative, India; Gopalkrishna Gandhi, Chairman, IIAS; Kapil Sibal, Minister of Human Resource Development and Minister of Communications and Information Technology; Ajay Chhibber, UN Assistant Secretary General and UNDP Assistant Administrator and Peter R deSouza, Director, Indian Institute of Advanced Study (IIAS) [Photo: Dalip Kumar/UNDP India]

Ministry of Human Resource Development, Indian Institute of Advanced Study and UNDP, through this initiative, will support South-South collaboration on ways to integrate human development analysis and approaches in development strategies.

New Delhi -  An International Centre for Human Development to be set up in India will support efforts by governments of the South to integrate human development approaches and ensure improved development outcomes for poor and marginalized people. As governments of the South are increasingly dealing with multiple challenges of changing aspirations of citizens, rapidly globalizing economies, environmental sustainability, and rising inequality, this Centre is designed to provide new approaches and solutions.

An Agreement to this effect was signed by Lise Grande, United Nations Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative, India and Peter R deSouza, Director, Indian Institute of Advanced Study (IIAS). The Agreement was signed in the presence of Kapil Sibal, Minister of Human Resource Development and Minister of Communications and Information Technology; Gopalkrishna Gandhi, Chairman, IIAS and Ajay Chhibber, UN Assistant Secretary General and UNDP Assistant Administrator.

“We are delighted to be partnering with UNDP in launching the International Centre for Human Development which will provide valuable support to efforts of national governments in the South to collectively share, learn and realize the objectives of human development,” said Minister Kapil Sibal.

The Centre will provide policy advisory services based on national and international evidence to ensure that human development concerns become integral to planning processes and policy making. The Centre will focus on moving from human development analysis to action and on adaptation of good practices to local contexts. It will also provide a range of capacity development tools and services with a special emphasis on monitoring and evaluation of human development processes and outcomes.

The human development approach was pioneered by UNDP in the early 1990s. More than 700 regional, national and local reports have been produced in over 140 countries. According to Ajay Chhibber, UN Assistant Secretary General and UNDP Assistant Administrator, “India has embraced the concept of human development originated by one of its greatest economists and Nobel Prize Laureate Amartya Sen, and we hope the Centre will help disseminate the policy and practice of human development across the developing world.”

In India, UNDP partners with the Planning Commission and several state governments on issues related to Human Development. Lise Grande, United Nations Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative, India, said, “Given that India has produced the largest number of decentralized human development reports anywhere in the world, and has a wealth of experience to share with the world in developing policy frameworks that put people at the centre of development, it is only natural that the Centre be hosted in India.”

“The Centre will provide a range of services to national governments and will be guided by the objective of translating the analysis of human development reporting to policy inputs and practices that can help advance human development,” said Peter R deSouza. These include – research and analysis support on the policy dimensions of a human development approach including trade-offs of various people-centered policy measures; policy advisory services that can help translate the human development concept into policies aimed at improving human development at national, sub-national and local levels; developing capacity of national governments, parliamentarians, CSOs and academia to undertake human development-oriented policymaking and advocacy; and monitoring and evaluation support to develop and support decentralized and community level monitoring tools.

Contact Information

K Seeta Prabhu: seeta.prabhu@undp.org; 9810079572

Nandita Surendran: nandita.surendran@undp.org; 9810084776