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(development studies / Japan / WB president) - Reflective Journal essays


phabee007 2 / 2  
May 29, 2012   #1
Hi all,
i am writing my reflective journals, it woul be nice if some body can correct my grammar an givbe comments

Cheers.

1. why do you choose development studies programme?

Since I graduated from bachelor of civil engineering degree, I did not have much experience in this field. Thus, I spent my gap years to explore myself. Changing careers was normal during this time, I got involved in some different career such as surveyor, administrator. Interestingly, once I worked for local non-profit organisation, I found that is appropriate for me as I can travel to different parts of the country and worked with variety of people groups such as local and international volunteers. Coordination with variety of communities requires communication skills which is one of major key of this field. My working experience enhanced much my communication skills because I had cooperation with many sectors both nongovernmental organisations (NGO) and public sectors. However, my main involvement in the organisation is related to implementation and technical skills rather than management and policy team. The needs of management and policy skills combined with lacking of academic background in development studies field of study has led to selection of this field of study.

Gaining background of the academic background from university is challenging due to bachelor background and current field of study are different. However, I think this course could broaden my perspectives in field of development both practical and theory aspects. Additionally, I hope this course could answer my needs and my doubt about development field with belief that I could get involved in the policy, management and proposal making team for further career. Furthermore, development studies might enhance my academic skills such as analytical skills, at the same time; it could provide me to see the world of development in other parts of the world as the course covers broadly worldwide. I believe that development studies programmes would help me to see the connection, relationship between theory and practical work and also could provide me lessons learnt from successful and failed cases from many places in the world. These lessons would be very useful for me as practitioner when they are applied in my country; it would help me to see how practical work and theory work fit together in different places and different conditions.

2. Japan would not be developed country in 2050

I have read research article from AFP which is done by 21st Century Public Policy Institute estimates that Japan could fall out of the league of developed nations by 2050. The institute claims that Japan has increase of greying population and shrinking of population and low productivity are the main causes of out of developed nations. However, I would argue that Japan could be still developed country even they confront these problems.

The problems of low productivity, low population growth and increasing greying population has not only happened in a few years ago, in fact it has appeared for some period of time, but Japan still be in front of the world economic largest. Furthermore, Japan is still the big donor in South East Asia region. Just a few days ago, Japanese government made decision to cancel the debt to Myanmar around 3700 million USD. Moreover, the government has promised to support International Monetary Fund (IMF) with a huge amount of money 60 000 millions USD. These kinds of contribution could well indicate that Japan is still rich country. Additional estimation of the institute that Japanese economy will start getting smaller at some point in the 2030s, gross domestic product (GDP) will fall behind India in 2014 and by 2050 it will lose its economic presence significantly, dipping to be only one sixth of Chinese and United States economy and one third of Indian economy. These estimations could be true but it is just in terms of world ranking economy. However, in order to fall out of the league of developed nations, it could rely on variety of factors, even Japanese economy will lost the world ranking, population size is big difference comparing to China and India especially GDP per capital would still higher than those countries. Furthermore, Japan shows that how good they can manage and tackle with the problem. For example in the past, especially during the Second World War, Japanese economy was heavily destroyed, but Japan tried hard to climb from bottom to top world economy and during 1970s-1980s Japan became world second largest economy even though situation. at that time was worse than current situation.

This information combined with daily life experience, I see Japanese NGOs working to help others countries in many parts of the world. Furthermore, Japan has a large business investing in overseas. For instance, Honda, Toyota, big company of cars makers is located

3. Week2: reflect on WB president: qualification and transparency

The result of a presidential selection for the World Bank, the highest global financial institution, has left many questions for many economists and development. As a result, Mr. Jim Jong Kim will succeed Mr. Robert Zoellick, who will step down the end of June, and serve five year term as new president of World Bank. I am wondered that how transparent is it for selection process and how qualified is he for the new president.

Firstly, I suspect the transparency of the selection process. In final vote stage, the World Bank did not provide any detail about that and also did not inform which countries backed which candidates. It could be true that a long tradition process has been done by Unite States and Europe in the convention which mentioned that WB has been led by US and IFM led by European countries. Even thought, at current situation the role of emerging economies play an important role in dominance of global trade, finance and output, advanced economies has still taken leading role in major international financial institution. It seems true that world politics, qualification is not important; whoever is US nominee, American nationality, that people will win in important position.

Mr. Jim Jong Kim US national and President of Dartmouth College, New Hampshire, his focus on health and social projects and a lack of experience in economic policy or financial markets has raised questions about his capacity to head an institution. Mr Kim is health expert working for the world health organisation. Others two candidates are more qualified than him have not been chosen. I think the most qualified candidate is Ngozi Okojo- Weala, former World Bank managing director, and current Nigeria finance minister playing as African representative. Another candidates from Columbia are very interesting too, however, final stage he withdrawn from competition. Mrs. Ngozi Okojo- Weala, comparison with Mr. Jim Jong Kim, has much more experience in this financial institution because she has been working in the institution for ten years as managing director. Finally, she has not been chosen, I wonder how the doctor will run the financial institution. Moreover, I see that long history ago, the main focusing of WB work is in developing countries to assist them to overcome the poverty; therefore, it is good opportunity to have qualified representing from these countries to lead the institution because candidate from developing countries would know better situation to handle with the economic problem and poverty . Since the WB established, it has been monopolized by western world, United States to be more specific. As a result, poverty and gap between rich and poor has increased more and more, perhaps it needs to operate differently. It has been said that development is contested concept, and if long traditional customary has not been working why do not we try in different way.

Similar situation has happened in my country. For instance, competition amongst NGO for proposal funding, most NGO from country of funding source would tend to win proposal. This illustrates that it is about nomination rather than qualification.



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