The paper discusses an experiment with a method of participatory research which was carried out during two research projects in Kenya Maasailand in the period 1976-1979. One project concerned the impact of drought on the people of Kajiado District; the other was an evaluation of Kenya's Foot and Mouth Disease Control Programme. The study shows that under a particularly favourable set of circumstances, significant interaction between the research team and the rural community was possible. However, an attempt to replicate the research approach in a different area under different circumstances proved an abject failure.
This article will be of interest to researchers working at community level