Thompson, J.

Implementing Village Resource Development Programmes Through Participatory Rural Appraisal and Planning

This paper concerns PRA capacity building in the implementation and monitoring of the Village Development Programme of Kalam Integrated Development Project (KIDP) in northern Pakistan. It discusses the adoption and institutionalisation of PRA in village planning activities of the programme, which has involved the training of village extensionists to participate in PRA teams. The selection of these persons is discussed. Among the many comments on this innovative approach, the author notes that the pace of adoption has been appropriately slow given the experimental nature of this approach.

Addressing the gaps or dispelling the myths?: participatory approaches in low-income urban communities

This overview article for a special issue of RRA Notes focusing on participatory tools and methods in urban areas introduces the papers included in the collection and highlights some of the key issues. It discusses the 'problem' of applying participatory approaches in urban communities, and compares participatory approaches in urban and rural areas. It finds that, despite clear economic, social and environmental differences between low-income rural and urban communities, they have many aspects in common.

The Impact of the Catchment Approach to Soil and Water Conservation: Summary of an Impact Study by the Ministry of Agriculture, Kenya

A Kenyan Ministry of Agriculture team used PRA to assess the impact of its Catchment Approach in six catchments, focusing on community level changes. This impact analysis linked differences in the implementation process with differences in results. It was clear that increased levels of community mobilization and involvement led to greater, quicker and replicating changes.

Of dialogue, debate and development: the use of Participatory Rural Appraisal methods to improve farmer managed irrigation systems in Kenya.

A participatory rural appraisal approach is presented in which a multidisciplinary team works with the community to assess its problems and opportunities relating to resource management. Water supply and distribution are one aspect of the approach. It takes a holistic perspective of the factors that impinge on a community's progress and seeks to help the local people to identify their problems and select strategies to help mitigate the situation.

Process Notes on the Training of Trainers and the National PRA Workshop of the Self-Help Support Programme of Interco-operation, Sri Lanka

This comprehensive report, written in narrative style, describes the process of organising a full-scale national workshop on PRA in Sri Lanka. The workshop also provided the opportunity to train four trainers of trainers. In preparation, the trainee facilitators explored two approaches to PRA training (methods vs. attitudes), and selected key themes for the programme. The activities of both the planning stage, the actual workshop and the review are explained in detail (eg games, buzz sessions, role play, frameworks for planning and evaluation, materials /background articles used).

From participatory appraisal to participatory practice: viewing training as part of a broader process of institutional development

Training alone will not be able to promote a participatory approach in a top-down bureaucratic institution. Other factors, such as funding base, organisational procedures and institutional priorities, may also have to change. Case-studies from Production Through Conservation programme, Lesotho and Soil and Water Conservation Branch, Kenya, illustrate that "it is possible to change the operational procedures and institutional cultures of large, bureaucratic public agencies, but this transformation is "neither easily nor quickly achieved".

Beyond Farmer First - Rural People's Knowledge, Agricultural Research and Extension Practice: Towards a Theoretical Framework.

Examines the Farmer First paradigm in the light of recent research into questions concerning the social construction of knowledge and power relations. It draws on a large and diverse body of literature from ecology, geography, anthropoplogy, sociology and other disciplines. The literature examined falls into three broad areas: (1) the nature of rural people's knowledge; (2) the interactions of actors; and (3) the institutional context.