Case Study on advocacy, influence and political participation in the Philippines: constituency-building and electoral advocacy with grassroots women in the Philippines
This case study describes how the membership federation of the Democratic Socialist Women of the Philippines (DSWP) has used advocacy to organise and advance the interests of grassrootsÆ women within the political arena. The advocacy experiences in this story range from local level denouncements in cases of domestic violence, to legislative reform, and to electoral organisation establishing a womenÆs political party and field women candidates for the Party List Law in 1998. The study is primarily a description of how a national federation mobilises its membership to advocate at different levels. The experience from DSWP provides lessons about organising the power of numbers and responds to a number of questions: how grassroots members are incorporated into and ultimately drive the advocacy agenda; how decisions are made at the community level and in the organisation so that the process is empowering and owned by the members; and how women and other disadvantaged groups have created alternative forms of political strategy and organisation in order to engage in politics and at the same time, transform political culture. The study was an initiative of the Asia FoundationÆs Global Women in Politics Program (GWIP) supported by USAID (United States Agency for International Development).advocacy, influence, Philippines, domestic violence, women, gender, legislation, election
Colombia's new Constitution of 1991 gave the status of citizen and participant to a people which had not historically enjoyed it. This implied the need for citizenship education and formation to enable people to take advantage of their new status. Many non-governmental organizations in Colombia immediately rose to the challenge. Some of these were newcomers to this field. Others, among them the Instituto Popular de Capacitaci¾n (IPC, Popular Training Institute), came to this task with a long history of working to deepen democracy in a range of ways. Christian Aid Colombia began to support IPC in the area of citizenship education in 1992. This case study represents a collaborative attempt, by Christian Aid with IPC's Democracy and Citizenship Team, to document the experience of IPC in promoting citizen participation from 1991 to the present. It aims to be, on the one hand, a piece of applied research that informs future practice in the field of citizen participation in local urban governance, and on the other, an advocacy resource for IPC and Christian Aid in Colombia and the UK, that illustrates the challenges faced in holding open spaces for democratic participation in a country in conflict. After an introduction the study sets the context and then moves on to look at the legal framework for citizen participation in local governance. Next, IPCÆs experiences in promoting citizen participation are documented, followed by a look at some key variables (gender, armed conflict and other challenges). The final section looks at learning from the experience.
Challenging and changing the big picture: the roles of participatory research in public planning policy
This article examines the guiding ideas and ultimate realities of government-led participatory research in Tanzania and Uganda. It considers the extent to which research results have influenced meso- (e.g. district) and macro- (e.g. national) level planning for poverty reduction and why; the degree to which research processes have contributed to democratisation and citizen empowerment and implications for the future of participatory approaches to policy oriented research. The article reflects over the consequences of recent initiatives from development aid donors to streamline development assistance and improve the performance of sector ministries, leading to unprecedented pressure for poor countries to generate up-to-date, detailed socio-economic data. It looks specifically on how this has affected East Africa. It goes on to give a background to the development and role of Participatory Poverty Assessments (PPAs) in Africa, and looks specifically at the Tanzania PPA (TzPPA), 2002-2003, and the Ugandan PPA Process (UPAP), 1998-2001. It compares the methodological differences of the two projects, where the bad experiences with Community Action Plans (CAPs) in UPAP led TzPPA; and UPAP focussed more on involving as many individual community members as possible while TzPPA only sought large community-wide. Finally an analysis is made of the benefits of participatory approaches in UAPAP and TzPPA on policy and empowerment, and it concludes with the potentials and pitfalls of PPAs.
The authors explore the use of Web 2.0 tools for development and introduce readers to the concept of Web2forDev. Web 2.0 tools are radically changing the ways we create, share, collaborate and publish digital information through the Internet. Participatory Web 2.0 for development (Web2forDev for short) is a way of employing web services to intentionally improve information-sharing and on-line collaboration for development. It presents us with new opportunities for change - as well as challenges - that we need to better understand and grasp. The authors consider learning and reflections from practice and consider ways forward.
Changes in Attitudes, Roles and Behaviour of Public Servants and Beneficiaries Effected Through the Applications of PRA Methods by the NWP Dry Zone Participatory Development Project
This report describes the experience of New Dry Zone Participatory Development Project, a government project, in using PRA and its impact on the behaviour of both the public servants and the beneficiaries. The report summarises the main components of the project and the implementation process which involves PRA training for the technical support team (the staff of the government departments), development of a village resource management plan and the implementation of the plan using participatory methods. The report presents the findings of the case study conducted in selected villages to find out the extent of PRA influence in changing attitudes, roles and behaviour of the staff and the villagers involved in the project and the parameters used in measuring such changes. It also outlines the constraints and limitations of using PRA in the context of the project and the issues for further discussion.
This Practice Paper aims to contribute to ongoing reflections and debates taking place among aid practitioners about if, and how, big international NGOs (BINGOs) can be more effective agents of ‘progressive social change'.
It summarises a series of conversations that took place among seven members of the Institute of Development Studies Participation Power and Social Change team and staff from eight BINGOs between July 2008 and March 2009. During the conversations, participants considered how internal and external factors influence the potential of BINGOs to contribute to shifts in power relations; greater realisation of rights; and enhanced economic, political and social justice for poor and vulnerable people.
All of this was encapsulated in the term 'progressive social change'. At the end of the process, participants agreed that there is considerable scope for many BINGOs to pursue a more progressive agenda. They recommended that similar conversations need to continue and branch out, both in topical range and in participants in order to stimulate the kind of reflection and organisational learning required to do so.
This paper includes accounts of discussions, case studies shared by participants, inputs from academic critiques of BINGOs and practical tools to feed into such deliberations. It explores the types of changes that BINGOs are trying to achieve, the approaches they use - their models of change, and challenges and tensions commonly perceived to prevent BINGOs pursuing more radical social change agendas.
Provocative questions are raised as a means to help practitioners identify changes that their organisations need to make in order to more actively pursue social, economic and political justice. In some instances inspiring examples from BINGO participants suggest means to do so. References to organisational theory, meeting discussions and BINGO case studies are used to interrogate assumptions about how large complex organisations behave and to identify lessons that may be used to inform efforts to transform BINGOs into more effective agents of progressive social change.
From a study sketching the broad dimensions of participation, the chapter on evaluating participation argues that participation must be evaluated continuously as part of project process and that measurement can only be qualitative and therefore unpredictable.