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Guide to Development Speak



Business conducted online.

E- learning

The act of learning online.

Economic community

An economic union of countries seeking to coordinate fiscal and monetary policies and have eliminated trade barriers between themselves and established a common external tariff.

Economic development

The process of improving the quality of human life through increasing per capita income, reducing poverty, and enhancing individual economic opportunities. It is also sometimes defined to include better education, improved health and nutrition, conservation of natural resources, a cleaner environment, and a richer cultural life.
Economic growth

An increase in the nation's capacity to produce goods and services over a long period. This is calculated by using Gross National Product (GNP), which is the combined total of a country’s goods and services in a year.

Economic infrastructure

Physical structures that form the foundation for development such as water works, electrical power, communications and transport facilities. The level of infrastructure development in a country is a crucial factor in how fast a country’s economy can grow.

Economic integration

The merging to various degrees of economies and economic polices of two or more countries.

Economic policy

Statement of objectives and the methods of achieving these objectives. Examples include full employment, a high rate of economic growth, reducing inequality between regions, or keeping prices stable. This may be done though fiscal policy, monetary and financial policy and legislation, such as price and wage control.

Economies of scale

This economic principle states that as the volume of production increases, the cost of producing each unit decreases.


A community of plants and animals existing in an environment that supplies them with water, air, and other elements they need for life.

Ecosystem integrity

The extent to which the interrelationships among and within ecosystems remain intact so that the number and variety of living organisms can be maintained.


Travel and tourism to regions of unique natural or ecologic quality. Ecotourism also seeks to maximise benefits to local communities and minimise any social or environmental damage and help local people to conserve fragile cultures and habitats.


The extent to which a program has made desired changes or met its goals and objectives. It can be judged in terms of both input and output.


How well a programme has used resources and completed activities.


The migration of people out of a country.


The ability of individuals or community to do things for themselves gained by increased ability and strength, skills, confidence, more effective organisation and the opportunity to participate in decision-making.

Enclave economies

Developing countries which have small pockets of economically developed regions, often due to the presence of colonial or foreign firms engaged in plantation and mining activities. The rest of the larger, outlying areas usually experience very little progress.


The complex set of physical, geographic, biological, social, cultural and political conditions that surround an individual or organism and that ultimately determines its form and nature of its survival.

European Union

The framework for economic and political co-operation between 15 European countries: Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom. The countries co-operate on issues such as the environment, transport, and employment, as well as economic policies. On 31 May 2004, the EU will expand to 25 countries, taking in Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Cyprus, Malta, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Slovenia, Poland and Hungary.

Exchange rate

The rate at which central banks will exchange one country’s currency for another.
Exit strategy

A plan to continue a project after external funding has ended.


To sell goods or services to a buyer outside the country of production.

Export processing zone (free trade zone)

A designated area in which firms can import goods tax-free, as long as the imports are used to make more exports.
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