A group of development analysts had a dialogue about labour market, trade and poverty issues in 2004. They preceded the dialogue with exposure to the realities of the lives of six women from the Self-Employed Women's Association (SEWA) in Gujarat, India. The struggles faced by these women provided the frame for the technical dialogue that followed. This is a compendium of personal and technical reflections of the analysts involved in the exercise. While the personal reflections focus on the experience of the participants, the technical reflections give an economic analysis of the situation of the women. The exercise was part of the Cornell-SEWA-WIEGO exposure and dialogue programme aimed at starting a dialogue between mainstream economists, SEWA activists, and WIEGO (Women) researchers around key assumptions of neo-classical economics and neo-liberal economic policies, which trouble ground level activists and researchers working on issues of employment and labour. This project is described in an appendix in this document. An epilogue examines the use of exposure methodology for dialogue and key issues.
This paper looks at the exposure method part of the Immersion Programme with the goal to expose participants to the lives of poor people. The paper is part of the compendium Reality and Analysis (that can be found on http://www.arts.cornell.edu/poverty/kanbur/EDPCompendium.pdf), and a result of collaboration between the Indian NGOs SEWA and WIEGO, and the Cornell University, USA. The paper gives an introduction to the exposure methodology for dialogue (EDP) describing the concept and looking at how it evolved in a German and Indian context and how the Cornell-SEWA-WIEGO EDP programme came about. It takes an in-depth look at the application of EDP based on the experiences of the Cornell-SEWA-WIEGO programme. The paper proposes a design of business and issue-related EDPs for sensitising and motivating decision and policy-makers for shaping pro-poor policy. The specific phases of this type of EDP are examined and discussed including comments and recommendations based on experience. Recommendations are made for shaping the organisational process; learning about the methodology; learning about a culture of dialogue; and learning about the combination of ôExposureö with ôDialogueö on issues. An appendix looks specifically at the case of the Cornell-SEWA-WIEGO EDP, which had a as its objective to start a dialogue between mainstream economists, SEWA activists, and WIEGO researchers around key assumptions of neo-classical economics which trouble ground-level activists and researchers working on issues of employment and labour, including labour market interventions; and trade and foreign direct investment.
The assessment of household wealth in health studies in developing countries: a comparison of participatory wealth ranking and survey techniques from rural South Africa
Health researchers often wish to study the impact of wealth on health outcomes. To do this they must collect data on social and economic factors. However, the collection of detailed data on income and expenditure is rare in health studies in developing countries. Instead, researchers generally adopt more rapid procedures based on survey methodology. Increasingly this has included the use of Principal Components Analysis (PCA) to generate a number of separate indicators of welfare. An alternative approach is to utilise participatory wealth ranking to generate a measure of household wealth. The aim of this paper was to compare the results of Participatory Wealth Ranking (PWR) and an indicator-based survey methodology conducted within a health research programme (the IMAGE study) in rural South Africa. The data point to widespread and severe poverty among the study population, including indications of high unemployment, reliance on wage remittance and state grants, poor access to clothing, and fragile food and educational security. Household wealth indices were created from both techniques, using PCA to combine the survey data. Data from both techniques was available from 1467 households. There was a high level of internal of consistency in the participatory wealth ranking data However there was only moderate agreement between the ranking of householdsÆ relative wealth from the two techniques, although both techniques identified similar factors as of importance in determining wealth. The reasons for the discrepancy are unclear, but are likely to include methodological and conceptual factors inherent in both techniques. PWR may be a useful tool for the assessment of relative wealth in health studies in developing countries.
This manual is divided into three parts. Part 1 introduces important concepts about homeworkers and value chains. Part 2 is the heart of the study, which provides the tools needed to carry out a value chain study. In particular it shows how to construct maps to represent a value chain, which make it easier to understand some of the complex aspects within the chain, such as the numerous controls and links that exist. Other techniques explored are: " widening the information net and strengthening the basis for action by learning from buyers, manufacturers, homeworkers, and comparing their perspectives; " working with public agencies, as these actors impact significantly on the lives of homeworkers in terms of regulations and laws impacting on labour, trade policies affecting industry, and forms of harassment of labour; " applying gender analysis to garment chains, which is advocated as a component to be included in all research of homeworkers. Part 3 puts forward suggestions about how to use the research findings from the value chain analysis to improve the conditions and opportunities for homeworkers, and how to promote best practice amongst employers. It deals with how to begin working towards solutions, and how to support collective action and mobilise around codes and standards, in particular the issues of occupational health and safety and child labour. It also looks at how to help workers switch chains.
Many microfinance organisations are concerned about reaching the poorest sections of society, and are prepared to carry out screening procedures to identify these people. This article describes a pilot study to compare two such screening methods, the Visual Indicators of Poverty (VIP) test and the Participatory Wealth Ranking process (PWR), which have been used by the Small Enterprise Foundation in South Africa. A study is described which demonstrates the inaccuracy of VIP, a system based on static, externally judged criteria, when compared to PWR, which uses local knowledge of individual poverty. The article also focuses on some of the challenges faced in designing a cost-effective operational system based on participatory mapping and wealth ranking.
This report is a result of the first ever Uganda Participatory Poverty Assessment Process (UPPAP) in which local people were consulted in 36 rural and urban sites in nine districts in Uganda. In this assessment "voices" and perspectives of the poor are brought to the fore to influence district and national planning, implementation and monitoring. The report covers perceptions of poverty and wellbeing and strategies for coping with being poor, as well as the degree to which the poor have access to, and benefit from, services and infrastructure. It goes on to look at issues of government and poverty, along with the role that security plays in development. Finally there are rcommendations and messages for policy makers. The report points to the fact that poverty is more than just income and expenditure or the lack of basic needs, it is also a feeling of powerlessness. Poverty in the eyes of the poor is location specific, multi-dimensional, cyclic and seasonal and requires a holistic approach to it's alleviation.
This article assesses the impact of NGO intervention on the lives of women, through a participatory tool such as Venn/chapati diagramming. Used by the Aga Khan Rural Support Programme (India), it has motivated women in forty-five villages to form mahila vikas mandals. These mandals serve as platforms for women to come together to share their problems and try to address them. The article details the exercises carried out and the author concludes that women's groups are an empowering mechanism for women, giving them access to financial services and thereby greater control over decision making.
This manual presents methods by which the poor and the poorest can be identified so that they can be reached by the services of microfinance institutions - and so that the non-poor can be excluded from them. Whilst poverty targeting has long been regarded as difficult and costly, the authors argue that these methods, developed through field experience, are practical and cost-effective. The CASHPOR (Credit and Savings for the Hard-Core Poor) Network has developed a House Index that is adapted to the house styles of all countries in Asia where the Network programmes are operating. The Small Enterprise Foundation (SEF) has taken the methodology of Participatory Wealth Ranking and developed it to become an effective and cost effective means of identifying the poor. The manual gives practical details of these two methods for use by microfinance practitioners and others.