This paper was written from the perspective of a rural sociologist doing wealth ranking in Swaziland, with the Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) with the intention of identifying the poorest members of the community. It details the process of a decision to use a "rapid" approach, the percieved and actual problems with the said approach. Ranking mechanisms used are described and results and conclusions from the exercise given. It emphasises the need for adequate time for exercises to be conducted if they are to produce 'good' results.
This paper describes the experiences of a rural sociologist implementing a wealth ranking procedure in Swaziland under the auspices of the FAO. The approach of wealth ranking was tested in Swaziland as a method of identifying the poorer members of the community. The paper contains sections on the decision to adopt a 'rapid' approach; training and preparation; the actual ranking mechanism used; its results; and conclusions drawn from the exercise.