So what is Human Security? The 1994 human development reports definition of HumanSecurityequates security with people rather than territories and with development rather than arms.However, the genealogy of the idea can be traced back to growingdissatisfaction with prevailing notions of development and security in the 1960’s, 1970’sand 1980’s. Economics undoubtedly led the way with its critiquesof the dominantmodels of economic development starting in the 1960’s. Inthe mid 1970’s the
‘World Order Models Project’
launched an ambitious effort to envision and construct a morestable and just world order, and as a part of this endeavordrew attention to the problemof individual well being and safety.”Broadly however, Human Securityis achieved when and where individuals andcommunities have the options necessary to end, mitigate, or adapt to threats to their human, environmental and social rights; and have the capacity and freedom to exercisethese options and actively participate in attaining these options. Human Securityapplies most at the level of the individual citizen. It amounts to human well being; notonly protection from harm and injury but access to other basic requisites that are thedue of every person on earth. While material sufficiency lies at the core of HumanSecurity, the concept encompasses non material dimensions to form a qualitativewhole…..the quantitative aspect refers to material sufficiencythat the pursuit of HumanSecuritymust have at its core. The qualitative aspect of Human Securityis about theachievement of human dignity, which incorporates personal autonomy, control over one’slife and unhindered participation in the life of the community.By focusing onpeople, Human Securityrenders meaningless the consideration of traditional territorialboundaries; even the nation and the state cannot be accorded a higher priority.
The Basic Ideals of Human Security
How safe and free are we as individuals? That is the central question behind the idea of Human Security. It’snot a new question, but it is one that has stirred up debate betweenpolicy makers and thinkers. After the Cold War, governments’ NGOs’, InternationalOrganizations, and ordinary citizens are now in position to explore that question asneverbefore and to act to enlarge the envelope of safety and freedom. The major worklegitimizing the importance of current Human Securitystudies, the UNDP’s
HumanDevelopment Report 1994
,set forth “seven main categories” of “threats to HumanSecurity.”These tenets are described briefly below.
The measure of an individual’s or a group’s economic security is based on a twofoldclaim that factors in a person’s financial resources and whether the possibility exists touse these resources to satisfy basic needs. In order for economic security to beguaranteed, either “an assured basic income –usually from productive andremunerative work” must exist for individuals or “in the last resort from some publiclyfinanced safety net.” Threats to this form of security derive from such wide-rangingcauses as widespread corruption, environmental disasters, a state’s economic policies,or even the faceless danger of globalization. Examples of threats to economic securityin the region are numerous. One such instance came in the 1990’s, when many citizens