Cahiers des Amériques Latines (2020-08-01)

Genèse et réappropriation du « développement alternatif » (à la coca) en Bolivie et au Pérou. La fabrique « par le bas » d’un concept onusien

  • Marie-Esther Lacuisse

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 93
pp. 173 – 192


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This article explores the origins of “Alternative Development” in Bolivia and Peru, a concept promoted by United Nations, in 1998, as a new strategy to fight illicit drugs through a reinforcement of rural development aid in supply countries. In this framework, this article examines the bottom-up dynamic of an international concept and a re-appropriation process at an international scale, as a renewal of the top-down view of the production of the international drug control policy as well as the theory of norms circulation. This text shows, firstly, that “Alternative development” is concept carried by actors from South and it has emerged in coca growing territories in terms of social policy for contesting and proposing an alternative to the prohibition perverse effects. Secondly, it shows the instrumental re-appropriation that ultimately turned the concept into a controversial tool in terms of supply reduction, under the influence of the United States and their “War on Drugs”.