global south

The ‘global south’ (or ‘Global South’) is a term used by international organizations such as the World Bank and as well as many NGOs to identify countries on the southern side of the so-called North/South divide. The term is, however, not defined by geography: most of the global south countries actually lie in the northern hemisphere. The concept was introduced into development discourse in the 1980s following the publication of the Brandt Report. Willy Brandt, a former chancellor of West Germany, led the working group that prepared this report, and it is still considered one of the most comprehensive analysis of global development issues. The term was intended as a more value free alternative to terms like ‘developing country’ or ‘third world’: there are various other alternatives, for example ‘minority vs. majority worlds’, but they are not as widely used and understood.

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