Course code Soci6003

Credit points 2

Human Development

Total Hours in Course80

Number of hours for lectures12

Number of hours for seminars and practical classes12

Independent study hours56

Date of course confirmation16.03.2011

Responsible UnitInstitute of Social Sciences and Humanities

Course developer

author Sociālo un humanitāro zinātņu institūts

Līga Paula

Dr. sc. soc.

Prior knowledge

PolZ5010, Public and Nongovernmental Sector

Soci5014, Development Programms

Soci5042, Social Welfare

Soci6014, Research of the Quality of Life

Course abstract

The aim of the course is to develop understanding of the concept of human development and its significance in different spheres of public life both in Latvia and in the global context. Graduate students are made aware of the potential of using and analyzing the fundamental principles of the human development approach in policy-making in areas relevant to society (e.g. education, employment, health, environmental sustainability, gender, human rights, social policy, civic and political participation, democratic governance).

Learning outcomes and their assessment

In-depth knowledge of the concept of human development and its use in areas of public interest in promoting sustainable development, understanding of criteria and indicators for the evaluation of human development dimensions - discussions during seminars.
Ability to analyze sectoral development policy documents, identify problem situations and find solutions using sectoral databases and statistics to justify decisions - discussions and practical tasks during seminars.
Competence to analyze policy documents and develop reasoned proposals for improvement of sectoral policies, using the principles of human development approach - individual work.

Course Content(Calendar)

Lecture topics
1. Human development approach, measuring human development.
2. Role of the state and public sector in human development.
3. The role of democratic governance in human development.
4. Human development and human rights.
5. Poverty and inequality.
6. Sustainable development of society.
7. The role of education and employment in human development.
8. Health and human development.
9. Impact of globalization on human development.
10. Gender equality and human development.
11. Human security aspects in human development.
12. Development cooperation.

Topics for seminars
1. The concept of human development (debate).
2. Analysis of Human Development Reports (practical task).
3. Analysis of democratic governance indicators (practical task).
4. Modern slavery and its manifestations: situation analysis in Latvia and in the world (practical task).
5. Forms of inequality in the context of human development (debate).
6. Impact of society on the environment, ecological footprint (practical task).
7. Education and labor market: challenges in Latvia and in the world (practical task).
8. Public health in Latvia (debate).
9. Globalization and culture: UNESCO World Heritage (debate).
10. Human security aspects in Latvia and the world (debate).
11. Participation of Latvia in development cooperation programs (practical task).
12. Presentation of individual semester work.

Requirements for awarding credit points

Test with a mark.
It consists of a cumulative assessment of progress during the semester:
- tasks performed independently and presented during seminars;
- discussions during seminars on previously prepared topics;
- individual work done during the semester on the topic of Master's thesis in connection with the approach of human development (pp. 8-10), submitted and presented at the given time.
Exercises for seminars and individual work must be credited and assessed successfully.
Master students should actively participate in discussions and express their opinion.

Description of the organization and tasks of students’ independent work

- Independent literature studies on topics covered in seminars, preparation for discussions in seminars.
- Individual independent work on the theme of Master's thesis in connection with the approach of human development. The volume of the paper is 8-10 pages and should be submitted within the specified time.

Criteria for Evaluating Learning Outcomes

Test with a mark.
A final grade on a 10-point scale consists of a cumulative assessment of progress during the semester:
- tasks presented during seminars,
- discussions during seminars,
- individual work done during the semester (8-10 pages), submitted and presented at the given time.
Discussions are judged on students’ involvement and ability to argue their views.
The tasks are evaluated according to the requirements set for each of them.
Individual independent work is evaluated by the quality of the task fulfillment requirements set by the lecturer at the beginning of the course.

Compulsory reading

1. Deneulin S., Shahani L. (eds.) (2009) An Introduction to the Human Development and Capability Approach: Freedom and Agency. Ottawa: Human Development and Capability Association. Pieejams:
2. Latvija. Pārskats par tautas attīstību (kopš 1995. gada)
3. UNDP. Human Development Report (kopš 1990. gada) Pieejams:
4. Sabina Alkire. Human Development: Definitions, Critiques, and Related Concepts. Pieejams:
5. Readings in Human Development. Concepts, Measures and Policies for a Development Paradigm. S. Fukuda-Parr, A.K. Shiva Kumar (eds.). New Delhi [etc]: Oxford University Press, 2003.
6. Cilvēktiesības pasaulē un Latvijā. I. Ziemele (red.). Rīga: Izglītības soļi, 2000. 346 lpp.
7. Human development: a textbook: (an abridged transl. from the Russian). Ed. by V. Kolesov, T. McKinley; United Nations Development Programme; Moskow State University School of Economics. Moscow: Human Rights Publishers, 2000. 383 p.
8. Tautas attīstība: mācību līdzeklis. Autori: G. Anča ...u.c. Rīga: Jumava, 2002. 267 lpp.
9. Vide un ekonomika. Dz. Atstāja, Dž. Dimante, I. Brīvers u.c. Rīga: LU Akadēmiskais apgāds, 2011. 256 lpp.
10. Hanovs D. (2008) Šeit, visur un tagad. Globalizācija Latvijā: konteksti, diskursi, dalībnieki. Rīga: Drukātava, 2008. 334 lpp.
11. Vide un ilgtspējīga attīstība. M. Kļaviņš, J. Zaļoksnis (red.). Rīga: LU Akadēmiskais apgāds, 2011. 334 lpp.
12. Cilvēkdrošība Latvijā un pasaulē: no idejas līdz praksei. Ž.Ozoliņa (red.) Rīga: Zinātne, 2012. 463 lpp.

Further reading

1. Zobena A., Ijabs I. ( (2015) Jaunas pieejas sociālās attīstības mērīšanā: cilvēki, teritorijas, pašvaldības. Rīga: Latvijas Universitāte, 390 lpp.
2. Dzimtes studiju centrs (2008). Gender Matters in the Baltics. Rīga: LU Akadēmiskais apgāds, 2008. 421 p.
3. Elliott A. J. An Introduction to Sustainable Development. Third edition. London and New York: Routledge, 2006.
4. Stiglitz, J. (1999) Participation and Development: Perspectives from the Comprehensive Paradigm. World Bank.

Periodicals and other sources

1. Journal of Human Development and Capabilities. - London: Routledge. ISSN 1945-2837
2. World Development. - Qubec, Monreal: World development Editorial Office. ISNN 0305-750X


Compulsory course for the ESAF academic Master's study program "Sociology of Organizations and Public Administration"