In this lecture, J. M. Smith explains clearly the differences and the links between evolution, development, self-organization and reproduction.
Although there is a parallelism between the development changes that convert an egg into an adult and the evolutionary changes that converted single-celled ancestors into the existing array of multi-cellar animals and plants, these mechanism are entirely different: the development changes are not driven by natural selection. Development depends on genetic information accumulated during millions of years of evolution. The evolution of adult forms, however, depends on development changes in successive generations.
Changes in genes cause changes in morphology, but during the evolution, it is not the form (morphology), but the information that is conserved (the regulatory genes that act as signals inducing structures to develop at particular places).
Nonetheless, there is a necessary link between development and evolution. Development is modular and evolution proceeds by modifying the later development stages of a module. E.g., the embryo is successively divided into smaller and smaller regions, whose growth is to a degree autonomous. So, changes in one module become possible without the necessity to alter every part.
The basis of heredity is template (stamp) reproduction, not self-organizing structures, because the latter cannot ensure their own survival and reproduction.
This small book is a must read for all those interested in basic biology and evolution.