Development Workers in Action
Using Honduras as a case study, Jeffrey T. Jackson illuminates the processes by which wealthy western countries target countries in Latin America, Asia, Africa, and the Middle East for political economic construction, or nation building. In the process, he draws a provocative connection between the efforts of international development workers and the emergence of global governance. Jackson examines the significant roles played by international development workers—"the globalizers"—operating in Honduras over the past thirty years, particularly in the troubled construction of the El Cajón hydroelectric dam, the creation of maquiladoras, and the multinational relief, recovery, and reconstruction efforts following Hurricane Mitch.
He finds in the international development community a close-knit coalition of policy makers who have inserted themselves into the local political process and pushed the Honduran nation-state to conform to international norms and integrate into a transnational structure of governance.
Jackson examines the mechanisms of power at the disposal of these development organizations, the expertise of those administering development aid, the agency of development workers, and the benefits that accrue to donor countries. In doing so he makes a persuasive connection between nation building and global governance—raising important questions about whose nations are being built and why.