This work examines the intersectionality of economic, social and environmental impacts of the International Monetary Fund’s and World Bank’s application of structural adjustment programs (SAPs) within Latin America and Ghana, Africa. Varying economic and social indicators illustrate the underperformance of SAPs in their intended mission to reduce poverty and debt in developing nations. This research argues Gross Domestic Product is an imperfect measure of improving quality of life and points towards other indicators such as increasing national debt, rising incidences of poverty, and exacerbated regional disparities to demonstrate the shortcomings of SAPs. This piece also investigates the limitations adjustment imposes on government ability to effectively address the rising social costs attributed to SAPs. Furthermore, this work explores SAPs’ role in the acceleration of climate change through facilitated processes of deforestation in Ghana, growth of transnational industry in Latin America, and subsequent increases in greenhouse gas emissions. These developments intensify challenges posed by climate change for post-adjustment nations whose ability to respond to issues of natural disaster and human well-being are already constrained. Accordingly, the investigation has shown that comprehensive and balanced evaluation of social, economic, and environmental indicators will prove of use in future sustainable policy formulation.
Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 4.0 License.