BUILD India and BUILD LA hosted an informative and engaging discussion last night with the Director of the Center for Global Development and Sustainability at Brandeis, Laurence Simon. Many topics involving the ethics of outsiders working in the field of sustainable development were touched upon including social, political, and historical roots of poverty throughout South Asian and Latin American regions.
One of the topics that resonated most with BUILD India’s mission was the discussion of castes and discrimination as a large, underlying factor in, and contributing factor to, the continued prevalence of poverty. The examination of the psychological and historical role that caste system has played historically and currently plays in India provided an elucidating perspective. Understanding castes culturally and historically is imperative in achieving the goal of working to combat poverty and the lack of sustainable development in many areas of India.