This issue of Compas magazine focuses on the main controversies that individuals, communities and agencies involved in endogenous development are experiencing, and to show examples of methodologies to handle these controversies. Many of the articles presented show that the experiences of development agencies in consciously and systematically dealing with controversies are still few. The issue focuses on four controversial issues dealt with in separate sections: traditional leadership and governance, gender roles, agriculture and health care. Some of the main questions dealt with are how controversies between traditional leadership and formal government can be bridged; how to build on the strengths of both traditional and modern health care systems; how to understand culture-based gender concepts and support women in traditional cultures who face suppressive gender-related taboos; and how understanding between scientists and traditional farmers can be increased to help agriculture adapt to changing conditions. The issue includes articles on traditional ways of dealing with controversies; challenges between African, Asian and western philosophy; contexts, concepts and controversies between Andean and western cosmovisions; potentials and questions regarding indigenous institutions in Ghana; blending governance systems in Ghana; revitalising traditional leadership in Andhra Pradesh, India; conflict transformation between pastoralists and settled farmers in Sudan; dealing with land conflicts in Zimbabwe; livestock controversies in Europe; traditional leadership and gender in Kenya; rituals, taboos and gender in Sri Lanka; lessons from Buddhism on equality and diversity in Sri Lanka; ancient farming and modern science in Sri Lanka; changes and controversies in Uganda; controversies between farmers and scientists regarding grain storage n Nepal; and integrating different healing practices in Cameroon. The magazine also contains book reviews relating to the subjects discussed and descriptions of future issues. Sri Lanka, Kenya, Ghana, Cameroon, Europe, the Andes, Uganda, Nepal
This paper is the first of several 'think pieces' that have been commissioned as part of a collaborative research programme designed to examine the dynamics of institutionalising people-centred processes and participatory approaches for natural resource management (NRM) in a variety of settings. The paper focuses on natural resource management in Europe and explores the tensions between state-led and participatory management of water and forests. The authors analyse and discuss how participation does - or does not - occur in the management of forest and water resources at various institutional levels in European contexts. Using a historical perspective, they critically reflect on the roles and interests of the state in offering an institutional framework for participation and/or facilitating processes aimed at institutionalising participation in natural resource management. The paper comprises four parts: Institutionalisation of the State and Natural Resources Management; Forests and Water Management - the Changing Role of the State; Participation - States or People's Control? and Conclusions.
Participatory Learning and Action (PLA) has a long history in development planning in less developed countries. In recent years, PLA approaches have also been promoted for participatory development planning in rural areas of industrialised countries with functioning democratic institutions. This paper draws on experiences of applying participatory Rural Appraisal (PRA) in a one-week planning workshop in M³hlen, Northern Germany and asks whether or nor PRA is an appropriate instrument for participatory community development in societies with functioning local democratic institutions. The authors conclude that PRA should be seen as a complementary instrument to the existing political and institutional arrangements. That while civil society actors can take over complementary responsibilities and initiatives, the local administrators and democratically elected bodies need to play a key role in order for PRA processes in community development to become successful in affluent societies.
The Aarhus Convention is an agreement which was signed by 35 European and Central Asian countries in June 1998. It relates to the public disclosure of documents relating to environmental matters. The convention guarantees the right to information, the right to participate, and recognises the right to a safe environment. It also guarantees citizens that they will have a way to enforce these rights. This booklet is basically an "every thing you need to know" about the convention. It covers the background and main areas of influence of the convention. It is arranged using short questions and answers to a variety of topics centred on a persons "right to know" and "right to justice". Underlying the concept is the theme of participation and citizenship.
This report presents findings from a 12-month project on participation in local governance in four countries - Ireland, Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom - and evaluates new methods being adopted to promote participation in developing successful, local solutions to problems of social exclusion across Europe. The report will be useful for those working in participation with socially excluded and vulnerable groups. It examines three key issues - 1) innovative approaches to participation by the community, by voluntary and public sector in the context of combating social exclusion; 2) the need for change in local government and the community sector to ensure that participatory democracy is effective for socially excluded communities; 3) the potential for the European Union to further its new mandate to combat social exclusion by promoting participatory principles and methods
This book reviews contemporary campaigns for community participation and empowerment with examples from all over the world. It critically assesses developments in the 'mixed economy of welfare' in terms of their relevance for self-help and community participation. It also considers the concept of empowerment and its relation to public policy and development within social movements.
Participatory Rapid Appraisal: An Investigation into the Health and Social Needs of People Living in Danesmoor - Volume 1
The aim of this study was to identify the health and social problems in relation to Danesmoor, an area in North Derbyshire with high unemployment. PRA techniques were used to collect qualitative information from three main sources : key community people, community members, professionals working in the area. Questions were asked regarding people's perceptions of the area, the health and social problems, existing care service provision and "magic wand" - "within reason what would benefit individuals, families and the community as a whole". This report presents the findings under the groups of people interviewed (eg single mothers, children, health visitors, doctors, playgroup leader), giving direct quotations and their suggested magic wand solution to the problems. Lack of communication and coordination between various service providers is identified as a key issue. Finally an "overall magic wand" (solution to common problems) and a plan of action were made.
Unemployment and health: the development of the use of PRA in identified communities in Staveley, North Derbyshire
This study in Staveley, an area with high unemployment, aimed to: i) identify & enable people to address the personal risk factors for cardio-vascular diseases ii) enable unemployed workers to discuss health difficulties specific to unemployment iii) promote a greater understanding of the specific health needs of unemployed people Unemployed people and 200 children were interviewed, then key people in the professions of education, health, social services, police, clergy and housing. Video, photos and mapping were used and people "had an opportunity to test their own health by filling in a health profile questionnaire". The various groups' different perceptions of the problems and suggested solutions are analysed. There is a need for "an informed, integrated, inter-agency approach with the involvement of unemployed people in order to respond effectively to the problems of unemployment".