Published online by Cambridge University Press: 07 September 2011
Where the previous chapters dealt with how the more traditional aspects of human rights have been transforming the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) region, this chapter will deal with a relatively unexplored dimension – the interplay between Southeast Asia and the right to development. Although the term ‘right to development’ has been bandied about by many developing states, including those from ASEAN, not enough consideration has gone into defining what it really consists of or how it is to play a role in the international human rights discourse. Given the purported importance of socio-economic, cultural, and development rights to ASEAN states, it is important to elucidate the exact parameters of the right to development so as to see how it can take shape and be exercised within the region.
For much of the international community, human rights remains largely centred on the so-called first and second generations of civil-political and economic, social, and cultural rights respectively. Nonetheless, this third generation – development rights – is taking mincing steps towards a more tangible persona in the global arena through the development discourse's adoption of rights-based programmes and methodologies. It is gradually shedding its unflattering tag of a right that aims to encompass all human rights but in actuality does not consist of anything tangible.
As the name suggests, the right to development revolves around the mutual engagement of human rights and development.