The use of low-cost, small-scale technologies in developing countries was promoted in the 1960s by Dr E F Schumacher, who published “Small is Beautiful: A Study of Economics as if People Mattered” in 1973.
Schumacher’s work has shown us that poverty relates primarily to the limited access of poor people to the knowledge and resources with which to address their basic human needs and promote sustainable development in such areas as water supply and sanitation, food production and processing, housing and construction, energy, transportation and communication, income generation and employment creation. Schumacher’s message is even more relevant today, as we face issues of sustainability and globalisation, than it was thirty years ago. “Small is Beautiful” has been widely translated and has been described as one of the 100 most influential books of the last fifty years.
It is timely, therefore, in the current context of concern regarding poverty, sustainability, global partnership and related Millennium Development Goals, to revisit “small is beautiful” and revitalise interest in the application of smaller-scale and intermediate technology for poverty eradication. The publication of the “Small is Working: Technology for Poverty Reduction” video and associated booklet is intended to present, review, revitalise and promote the contribution of smaller-scale and intermediate technology to poverty reduction and sustainable development.
The video is produced in three versions - a TV broadcast version of 25 minutes duration, a ‘conference opener’ version of 10 minutes and a “video news release” version of 2/3 minutes. The booklet, of 60 pages, is designed to provide further information to support the video as a stand-alone document. UNESCO is fully committed to promoting the “knowledge society” at all levels, including the grass roots, and looks forward to further addressing the vitally important challenge of promoting the application of technology for poverty reduction.
For technical Information: Contact: Tony Marjoram, SC/BES, firstname.lastname@example.org
For sales information: Contact UNESCO Publishing (booklet and video available in mi-October 2003)