Communication for Development and Social Change: In Search of a New Paradigm

  • Jan ServaesEmail author
Living reference work entry


This chapter outlines three development paradigms which are still being applied in theory and praxis: modernization, dependency, and multiplicity. It then argues that these paradigms determine the way two dominant communication models have emerged. Each development paradigm and communication model leads to divergent policy options at different levels of societal change: local, national, international, global.

The right to communication is presented as a translation of the communication policy of the multiplicity paradigm. This principle, as a fundamental human right, clearly indicates that another communication model necessitates democratization and thus a redistribution of the power on all levels. The point of departure is not an elitist position but development from the grass roots.


Modernization Dependency Multiplicity Diffusion model Participatory communication Policies Right to communicate 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.KU LeuvenLeuvenBelgium

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