This is a longer version of the paper by Lily in Koning (ed.) Proceedings of the International Symposium on Participatory Research in Health Promotion (1994). The paper outlines the background to the evolving Women's Development Project (WDP) in Bangladesh. It focuses on a health education component of the project, and gives an example of community mapping in a Bangladeshi village, conducted with village-based volunteer health educators (VHEs). The process of the exercise is reported, as are the reactions of the VHEs. The mapping exercise led to a discussion of the achievements and challenges faced, illustrating the potential role of mapping in enabling women to look at their own work in a new way. Other potential uses of PRA in the WDP are listed.
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This report outlines Youth for Action's (YFA) understandings of RRA and PRA (Participatory Resource Appraisal), and outlines the reasons for adopting PRA: to bridge the previous gap between the needs of the people and YFA's plans, to facilitate the involvement of the community in all aspects of planning. The report is the result of a PRA exercise in one village, conducted to develop PRA techniques while learning with farmers to assess local resources, choices and wealth. The PRA methods employed are listed, the visual results presented, but the process of applications is not discussed in detail. The one exception is an appendix on "fodder preference ranking by farmers" at the back of the report. The bulk of the report presents the findings of the PRA exercise, and an action plan based on the findings.
This paper, prepared as part of a report to the ODA, examines the past, present and future role of community participation in the development of Isiolo District, Kenya. Past initiatives discussed include government policy and practice, the institutional framework provided by the District Focus, and the role of the Department of Social Services. Current initiatives include the role of NGOs and international agencies, and community participation in the Isiolo Livestock Development Project. regarding the latter, there are discussions of the ILDP approach and its weaknesses, the role of the deda, ethnic conflict, women's participation and links with formal institutions. The final section discusses options for the future, including potential for the use of existing institutions, and channels for institutionalising and methods for facilitating community participation
Participatory Land Use Planning: towards a conceptual outline for a practical approach to land use planning in Sahelian countries
This paper is a critique of conventional (FAO) approaches and practices in land use planning in the Sahelian zone of Africa. The need for land use planning in Africa (particularly the Sahel) is outlined in the first section. The second section describes the evolution of land use planning systems, and the process involved in conventional systems. The fourth section discusses problems with the application of land use planning in Africa, the main critiques being the weakness of a hard systems/top-down approach. these are contrasted with the value of a soft systems/insiders' view approach. The fifth section outlines the principles for participatory land use planning (PLUP), that it: produce advice for farmers in a short space of time, which is easy to understand, and which is widely applicable to varying communities in the Sahel. PLUP should be based primarily on local needs, involving land users in the whole planning process, and providing advice which is not prescriptive but facilitative, and which solves specific problems. PLUP should strengthen village level capacities for land resource analysis and structures for management, combining top-down and grassroots information. Suitable advice should be given in a non-prescriptive way, and feedback and monitoring mechanisms should be established. The final section discusses alternatives to conventional/FAO LUP, and a tentative framework for PLUP is outlined.
This paper outlines the present (1988) state of soil and water conservation (SWC) in the Sahel (focusing on Niger, Burkina Faso and Mali). It focuses on conservation structures rather than the biological measures of erosion control (e.g. windbreaks, range management etc.). Section II describes and analyses major SWC systems recently introduced in the Sahel. Each system is analysed with regard to (i) impact on yields, (ii) construction and maintenance requirements, (iii) size of areas treated, (iv) the extent to which the techniques can be carried out by the population without external support. Indigenous SWC systems are described in Section III. Section IV deals with trends in Sahelian SWC. Section V indicates elements of a strategy to strengthen SWC in the Sahel and the final section presents some recommendations for governments, donor agencies and rural organisations. There is some discussion of the need to improve knowledge of indigenous systems of SWC and to maximize local participation
This paper presents the benefits of informal surveys and discusses how best to make use of informal surveys so as to guarantee its efficient and successful execution. It discusses the rationale for the use of informal surveys in agriculture, and its application as part of a flexible approach. The process is reviewed, from pre-fieldwork preparation, to the period in the field (incl. a section on interviewing farmers), to data analysis and writing up. An appendix discusses recommendations for on-farm agro-economic trials, using an example from Ca±ete in Peru.
This paper argues that the past decade (1980-90) has seen the steady building of an intellectual revolution in methods of rural development research. The movement began in the late 1970s as a reaction against the traditional research tool kit of questioannaires, on-farm trials, cost-benefit analysis and other 'scientific' methods based on the assumptions regarding rural populations that are commonly held by western agro-economics and sociology. A critique of the survey questionnaire is made to illustrate how methods can stray from their original purpose and can lead to a totally erroneous findings wrapped up in the deceptiveness of quantified data. Case studies are presented from the Philippines and Peru. A diverse selection of participatory methods, which seek to reduce the distance between 'researcher' and 'researched' , is introduced. The origin of these methods, their potentials and pitfalls are discussed.
These notes and the attatched correspondence concern the adoption of RRA methods for use in projects involving fishing communities in South Asia. They relate to the development of an RRA component in the work of Bay of Bengal Programme (BOBP), an Indian NGO. It is noted that "RRA has not been seriously attempted in fisherfolk communities or utilized in the formulation of fisheries development programmes". In investigating the applicability of RRA to fishing communities and the marine environment, the following problems are identified: (i) the mobility of marine resources is unlike the resources of other rural communities, and may present problems for the use of RRA; (ii) since most fisherfolk also undertake other activities, widening the scope of multidisciplinary teams may be necessary; (iii) the cooperation of various government departments may be needed to draw on wide expertise. The objectives of BOBP in adopting RRA are discussed, and the setting of a proposed RRA activity described, with gonsideration to the use of RRA. Finer details of the proposed activity are also given, but are less likely to be of interest. Attached is correspondence between BOBP and IIED concerning the proposed activities.
The paper argues that a new paradigm for sustainable agriculture has emerged from a recognition of the limitations of dominant scientific methods and advances in other domains. New systems of learning and inquiry are needed. Participation and collaboration are essential to ensure public involvement and representation of multiple perspectives. It is noted that there are many types of participation, some of which threaten rather than support sustainable agriculture. Participatory inquiry is a structured methodology used to bring about changes in problem situations that the people involved view as improvements. Methods have been devised for team dynamics, sampling, interviewing and visualisations. The criteria for validity of findings are discussed. Beyond new methods, however, a change in institutions and the development of a new professionalism in agriculture are urged for.
See trip report itself.
This book evaluates the impact of a sample of NGOs on poverty in rural South India. It provides an overview of the Government of India's poverty alleviation programmes, and discusses the role of NGOs. Four case studies are presented of the Rural Development Trust Community Organisation Programme (credit funds), the Church's Auxiliary Programme for Social Action (village organization and planning for self-reliance), the Kanyakumari District Fishermen Sangams Federation (marketing cooperatives), and the Arthik Samata Mandal Agricultural Development Programmes (credit, land levelling and irrigation). Each case study is examined with respect to its context, history and structure, impact in terms of realisation of objectives, economic and social impact, distribution of benefits, external influences, cost-effectiveness, sustainability and potential for replication. Strengths, weaknesses and lessons from each case are discussed, The concluding section summarizes the case studies in terms of reaching the poorest, types of benefits, innovation and flexibility, costs and reasons for success. Each case study contains discussion of methods and extents of participation, and the conclusions consider the impact on the poorest.
This paper addresses the common perception that the findings of a participatory inquiry may be undiscipled, subjective and unrepresentative. The participatory inquirer uses four criteria to establish the trustworthiness of their findings: credibility, transferability, dependability and conformability. The requirements and methods relating to each criterion are discussed in detail. These include prolonged and intense engagement, persistent/parallel observation, triangulation, peer debriefing, negative case analysis, participant checks, and confirmability audit.
Games are group activities that involve learning plus acquisition of skills and competence, building of trust and co-operation, and fun. A game-centred appraoch to development is important because: (i) the reductionist foundation of scientific methods are inadequate for understanding complex livelihood systems; (ii) complexity must be understood explicitly; (iii) the subjectivity of all actors, including investigators, must be recognised. RRA techniques are appropriate to meeting these needs. Games create the conditions that encourage group work, foster efficiency and increase the likelihood of the formatin of sustainable groups and institutions. The order of the book is: a discussion of reductionism, elements of complexity, subjectivity, creating conditions for interdisciplinarity, RRA (principles, techniques and groups), and various types of game. The latter, final, section suggests guidelines for trainers and animators, together with procedures for the conduct of some group processes, analytical and role-paying games.
Participatory Rural Appraisal Training Workshop held at Village Gerebir, Block Silli, District Ranchi, Bihar, India 13-17 August 1990
This is their report of a PRA training workshop organised by PRADAN for its staff and 15 other trainees. Part I of the report gives a detailed description of the process of the workshop in the site in which it occurred, including the processes of mapping, time lines, seasonality charts, historical transects, modelling, chapati diagramming, ranking and scoring, planning, and evaluation. Part II gives more detail on each of the activities, the methods used and how they worked out. Annex II gives an overview of the R/PRA methodology. Annex IV gives some hints on interviewing.
This paper examines the application of RRA to geographical studies of tourism. The rationale for adopting RRA in this subject is discussed and the nature of RRA is introduced and its relevance to field geographers discussed. Some techniques are presented, and the user-perspective (i.e. of communities) examined in detail. The paper concludes that RRA is of use to geographers studying tourism in developing countries where the quantity and quality of data are often variable. It is noted that its application in tourism has yet to be widespread.