The Ford Program promotes a holistic model of human development, which is guided by the principles of Catholic social teaching and grounded in the recognition of the inherent dignity of every person. We stand in solidarity with those in deepest need, learning from them and working together with them as they become the agents of their own change.
The Ford Program conceives of human development studies as a scholarly effort to understand conditions that affect human welfare, including economic growth and development, the political and social determinants of the distribution of wealth and opportunity, politics and public policy, religion and culture, health, and human rights.
Both in our scholarship efforts and our work with communities in Africa we consider a wide range of quantifiable indicators of human wellbeing: enrollment in primary school, literacy, infant and maternal health, incidence of preventable disease, access to and quality of water, and life expectancy. We also examine and stress the importance of qualitative measures of people’s capabilities, opportunities, and choices.