The Centre for Development Studies and Activities (CDSA) was established in August 1976, registered as a non-profit Trust and Society under the relevant Acts of 1860 and 1950 respectively in India.
Aims and Objectives of CDSA
- To conduct research on development problems and processes, to experiment with planning methods, to develop techniques of evaluation which give accurate feedback on the nature and type of changes taking place in the society.
- To teach and train participants about the problems and processes of development, to impart skills to them on the methods and techniques of planning, implementation, administration and evaluation.
- To help the governments, its agencies and other public bodies by training their personnel, carrying out pilot projects for them, conducting research in the areas of public policy and decision-making, and giving them correct and accurate feedback.
- To enter into contracts with individuals, firms, companies, societies, institutions, agencies, government and non-government organizations in India and abroad, which further the objectives of CDSA.
Development is a process of change leading to the attainment of a higher quality of life in a sustainable and inclusive manner. Growth, which indicates increase, is a linear process and is an important part of the process of development. Development however is concerned with issues of equity, justice and sustainability of both physical quality of life and standard of living and of transfer of power to micro level institutions that are governed by people who are themselves its beneficiaries. If, in the name of increasing production or consumption, actions are promoted that reduce the decision-making powers of local institutions, or create dependencies on interests external to the context and participants, they become mechanisms for impoverishment. Thus, charity, which creates dependency and patronage through gifts, are often the “Trojan Horses” who in fact suppress local self-determination and genuine development. CDSA’s programme for creating a new professional who acts as a development manager is based on inquiry and experience which generate awareness that sustainable development takes place only where people are first on the agenda and amongst people – the vulnerable! The approach to learning is thus experiential as well as scholastic and inculcates sensitivities, enhances knowledge and proficiency in various skills.