The Participatory Approaches Learning Study (PALS) examined the potential for increasing stakeholder participation in DFID country programmes and at DFID's experience of delivering aid through participatory approaches. Its recommendations include proposals on staff development, on ways to make the Project Cycle Management System more flexible and accountable, and on making participation a stronger characteristic of DFID itself. The two-year research project involved separate studies of four of DFID's geographical departments - DFID-India, DFID-Bangladesh, South East Asia Division, and the Western and North Africa Department, which included India, Bangladesh, Nepal, Ghana, Egypt and Nigeria. This report is a synthesis of the main findings and lessons from each of the geographical studies and includes Operational lessons from PALS, Participation and Project Cycle Management, Training Needs and Participation and Institutionalising Participation.
Participatory Rapid Appraisal for Community Development: a training manual based on experiences in the Middle East and North Africa
This manual is aimed primarily at NGOs and assumes that trainers have a prior knowledge of PRA techniques. The first section deals with how to plan and organise a training course in PRA, suggesting a set of questions, the ten steps of planning and giving checklists for planning, for materials and examples of warm-ups. The second section describes the individual training sessions in detail, covering the theoretical background to PRA (including PRA versus other research techniques) and a session on each PRA technique introduced. Each method is accompanied by handouts that could be photocopied, suggested activities and hints for the trainer. Particular emphasis is placed on PRA as part of a project planning process, suggesting an "innovation assessment and sustainability matrix" exercise. General fieldwork guidelines are included, but no detail of how to carry out individual activities in the field.