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3 Hum. Rts. & Int'l Legal Discourse 133 (2009)
How Can the Impact of Foreign Direct Investment on Human Development Be Measured and Regulated

handle is hein.journals/hurandi3 and id is 133 raw text is: EDITORIAL INTRODUCTION:
HOW CAN THE IMPACT OF FOREIGN DIRECT
INVESTMENT ON HUMAN DEVELOPMENT
BE MEASURED AND REGULATED?
OLIVIER DE SCHUTTER, JO SWINNEN and JAN WOUTERS*
This issue of Human Rights & International Legal Discourse is dedicated to the analysis
of the links between the inflow of foreign direct investment ('FDI') into a host state
and progress in human development in that state. It is composed of five articles which
were drafted in the framework of an inter-university research project on the links
between FDI and human development, funded by the Belgian Science Policy. This
research project is aimed at 'examining the impact on human development of the
liberalization of private FDI, through the conclusion of international investment
agreements'.' The lowering of barriers to FDI and waves of privatisation have caused
amounts of FDI to increase greatly in recent decades, allowing enormous sums of
money to flow into certain countries.2 The research examined under which conditions
the resulting inflows of capital, know-how and technologies would actually improve
the situation of the people in the countries receiving them, beyond the much studied
impact of the arrival of FDI on economic growth. This question is of immense
importance and should be at the heart of all home and host countries' policies vis-4-
vis FDI. The present issue therefore sets out to identify and analyse the challenges and
opportunities that condition the relationship between FDI and human development
Respectively, Professor of Human Rights Law, University of Louvain (UCL); Professor of
Development Economics and Director LICOS, University of Leuven (K.U.Leuven); Professor of
International Law and International Organizations and Director Leuven Centre for Global
Governance Studies and Institute for International Law, University of Leuven (K.U.Leuven).
Interuniversity Attraction Poles Programme - Belgian State - Belgian Science Policy - Project IAP
VI/06, Democratic Governance and Reflexive Theory of Collective Action, Sub-Network Unit on
Foreign Direct Investment and Human Development. For more information, please visit http://
iap6.cpdr.ucl.ac.be/fdiunit.
2    A recent study shows that global inflows of FDI increased about ninefold between 1980 and 2007,
peaking at a global total of $1,833 billion in 2007. See UNCTAD, World Investment Report 2008:
Transnational Corporations and the Infrastructure Challenge 4 (New York and Geneva: United
Nations, 2008), available at www.unctad.org/en/docs/wir2008pl-en.pdf (last visited: 7 October
2009).

3 HR&ILD 2 (2009)

133

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