Vulnerabilities - Least Developed Countries and other vulnerable countries

FERDI advocates for the inclusion of vulnerability and the specificity of vulnerable countries in the universal development agenda. Recognised for its expertise and experience on this issue, FERDI strives to influence decisions concerning vulnerable countries, and in particular the "Least Developed Countries" (LDCs).

LDC category: rationale and impact. 50 years after the creation of the category, FERDI's work on LDCs focuses on the rationale of the category, including improving the identification of LDCs, and the effectiveness of measures taken in their favour.

Differentiating countries according to their vulnerability. FERDI’s work on LDCs is part of a more general theme relating to the international economic order: that of the differentiated treatment (in financial and commercial matters) of developing countries, vulnerability being one of the three distinctive characteristics of LDCs but which also affects other countries. FERDI is involved in the analysis of developing countries' vulnerability in its different forms (economic, climatic, and socio-political), measurement of vulnerability, and the use that can be made of the corresponding indicators for international policy.

The concept of vulnerability and participation in international debates. FERDI has long been involved in developing and updating vulnerability indicators. This activity aims to keep the debate on the concept of vulnerability alive, and to ensure that it is illustrated by indicators whose properties are compatible with their use in international institutions, particularly in the context of non-concessional resource allocation. FERDI's influencing activities are reflected in numerous institutional collaborations, with the African Development Bank, the Commonwealth Secretariat, and the United Nations and its Office of the High Representative for the Least Developed Countries, Landlocked Developing Countries and Small Island Developing States (OHRLLS). Within the framework of these collaborations, FERDI uses its recognised expertise validated by high-level publications and is called upon to assist in the development of new vulnerability indicators.

Achievements 2021-2022

• Preparing for the 5th UN Conference on LDCs. For this conference, which marks the 50th anniversary of the category, and in addition to the book Out of The Trap (new edition in progress), which assesses the impact of belonging to the category on the various dimensions of LDC development, FERDI is questioning the logic of the category in the light of current issues, and is organising, and participating in, conferences on the relevance of the category and its future.

• A study on the impact of LDC identification variables and their components on the structural transformation of LDCs is underway.

• Substantial contributions to the Commonwealth Secretariat's report proposing a universal vulnerability index and to the UN report published for the development of a multidimensional vulnerability index, which is expected to be the subject of substantial discussion in 2022 and in which FERDI will be actively involved.

• New Multi-Dimensional Vulnerability Index. In 2022, FERDI is coordinating the UN High Panel (10 members) for the implementation of the Multi-Dimensional Vulnerability Index.


All publications

All indicators

All events

Press review