AP Human Geography: Development- Chapter 10.1

Before we can really begin to understand development, we have to delve into how it can be defined and measured. In the 60’s the best way to compare development rates was by the Gross National Product. It is a broader category than Gross Domestic Product, which is a measure of goods and services produced in one country in one year, while GNP includes all goods and services from the recorded history.

The GNP and GDP are slowly fading into the past as more and more countries begin to use a monetary measure called Gross National Income. The GNI is similar to the GNP/GDP because it includes only the formal economy while leaving out the informal economy even though illegal trade helps the general economy greatly. GNI is often seen as per capita GNI (GNI divided by population) to get a better grasp at the financial situation of a country and its populace. Developing countries should see rising GNI rates as they become more modern. To help understand processes of development, models like the modernization model have been created. This model theorizes that each country follows 5 steps to modernization.

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The model is countered by ideas that classical colonial powers will always hold power of less developed former colonies called neocolonialism. Neocolonialism is a structuralism theory. Structural Theories effectively state that those in power stay in power. Developing countries work to raise their GNI’s and become more modern. Sometimes they are stalled by neocolonialism, but they keep struggling along a ladder of modernization. They may never reach the top, but they continue to develop as new technology and ideas spread throughout the globe.