Too often, development is considered primarily in macroeconomic terms, with large industries and commercial enterprises trampling local livelihoods and leaving the ruins of cherished customs, traditional skills and other relics of a broken culture in their wake. It is this world shaking impact that breeds suspicion among people toward new ways of thinking, driving them into a defensive stance that collapses into self-defeating protectionism. Yet, neither is the answer to simply accept the destruction of worlds and ways of living with thousands of years of history and embedded knowledge within them in order to embrace modernity. Rather, development is the growth of something already in existence. Thus, it stands on the shoulders of giants.

“People are fulfilled only to the extent that they create their world (which is a human world), and create it with their transforming labor.”

- Paulo Freire

It is our conviction that everyone has something to offer and something to learn. PIDT has sought to integrate local traditional systems into global models, drawing from all sources what is positive for people’s lives. This is a strategy we routinely engage, whether bringing the latest technology, research and development to local crop proliferation or the delivery of herbal medicines, scaling up traditional handicraft production for increased market value, or consulting local child rearing practices to create an appropriate tool for healthy development and acculturation to schooling. Over the years we have seen this approach reduce the alienation that had been experienced at prior interfaces of local populations with development schemes, instead building trust and self confidence and ultimately bearing fruit. Back