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Information Centre | Nepal
A Country Analysis With a Human Face
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This CA has focused on 20 groups of Nepalis who, over the past decades, and in some cases, over the past centuries, have been left behind by the ongoing development process and progress in Nepal—people for whom there is no level playing field. In so doing, it has attempted to articulate what makes these groups more vulnerable than others, how this manifests itself, and what are some of the causes, both immediate and deeper, for their vulnerability. The individual client profiles included in Part II also capture some of the major initiatives taken to date to address the groups’ vulnerabilities that can be built on for the future. Vulnerability, in the context of this CA, is to be understood as the incapacity, or difficulties, that members of potential client groups face in trying to cope with a wide range of economic, legal, political, social, cultural and environmental challenges in their day-to-day life. Most of these groups experience multiple vulnerabilities to poverty, weak human development, exclusion and weak individual protection.An attempt has been made to organize the immediate and deeper causes of vulnerability into those related to socio-cultural,economic, institutional and political, and geographic and environmental factors. Each set of causes identified in the causality matrix, and as applied to a specific client group, is important since they all contribute to creating and perpetuating people’s vulnerability. However, some broad root causes emerge from the overlaps between different client groups, suggesting that they may have special significance.Firstly, socio-cultural causes emerged as being consistently applicable to the vulnerability of most client groups. This set of causes can be divided into those that are centred on caste and ethnic discrimination, those related to gender inequality and discrimination, and those concerning individual capacity and confidence. Caste and ethnic discrimination and the associated norms and practices that institutionalize traditional hierarchical systems play crucial roles in affecting the vulnerability of almost all client groups. Gender inequality and gender-based discriminatory practices are another part of the socio-cultural picture, and flow from deeply rooted patriarchal belief systems. In addition to these broader systemic root causes, the vulnerability of most groups is also strongly affected by the individual capacity and confidence of the
people within the groups themselves.It is noteworthy that this lack of confidence and weak individual capacity is the result of the very same caste, ethnic and gender discriminatory practices that have institutionalized hierarchies in society, forcing some people to become unsuccessful in obtaining education, awareness on their rights, and the means to express their voice.
Secondly, economic causes appear to be at the center of determining vulnerability for many client groups. This set of causes focuses on overall economic performance and the lack of growth, structural and distributional issues, and questions of individual human capital. The unavailability of employment and
alternative income-generating opportunities is part of the reason why some of the groups remain in a continuous cycle of vulnerability from which they cannot escape. This, combined with an unequal distribution of resources to start with, causes very low resource endowments for most of the client groups, putting them from the start in a highly disadvantaged position. This is further exacerbated by a lack of individual preparation and skills as well as by grinding poverty that prevent individuals from entering a more productive environment and harnessing available opportunities in the market. Thirdly, institutional and political causes are another set of highly consistent factors in the vulnerability and exclusion of most groups. While the two are related, they are clearly distinct.
UN ,   (2013 )
Type / Script:
Annual Report in English
Thematic Group:
 UN : International Peace and Security
01.01.00  -  Political Conditions, Institutions, Movements
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