This brief paper is a write up of the experiences of an evaluation team using PRA tools in an impact evaluation of a community based programme providing drinking water (a MYRADA project in Mysore District, Karnataka State, India). The impact evaluation took place over only two days, but, as the paper highlights, some very pertinent lessons resulted from the experience. Six main tools from the 'PRA bag' were used in the evaluation: 'water system map', 'focus group discussions', 'time allocation drawing', 'seasonality of disease', 'individual interviews' and 'observation walk'. On the basis of these methods (and patient facilitation work by the PRA team), it was revealed that the any first impressions of a 'perfect' drinking water system were, in fact, unfounded. Serious (but rectifiable) flaws in the project - in terms of efficiency and equity of access - were exposed and, as a result, the local community became involved in identifying some remedial actions. This extremely useful, and clearly written, paper concludes with a frank discussion of some of the problems with the use of PRA tools, which according to the author, primarily stem from a poor understanding of group dynamics and good facilitation techniques.
The Nhlangwini Integrated Rural Development Project aims to empower local people, in order that they may improve their quality of life, by helping them develop strategies for addressing basic needs. The Nhlangwini Ward is situated in southern KwaZulu, South Africa. Three workshops were held over a period of three months during 1989. The first examined development problems in the area; the second specifically probed those problems associated with family planning; the third was a development planning workshop, employing visual techniques described in some detail by the paper. Participants were asked to draw local resources by imagining they could view the area from a helicopter. The process of adopting visual techniques has resulted in a change in emphasis - as a result of findings, the integrated development programme has switched approaches with regard to issues facing women, and in terms of its goal setting mechanisms.
A need exists for food security indicators, for use in targeting food security programs, to be both simple to derive and use. This document reports on research to develop such alternative indicators which combined both quantitative and qualitative approaches for identifying indicators of poverty, food insecurity and undernutrition. Participatory rural appraisal techniques and ethnographic case studies were used to identify locally determined indicators of food insecurity.
This working paper provides an evaluation and a critique of participatory research, specifically in the field of social sciences and agronomy (Agriculture, Nutrition, Alimentation). Reviewing the relevant literature, it summarises the basic participatory methodologies and investigates the limits of participatory research. The potential participatory research offers to the CRDI is brought forwards, notably as regards project evaluation.
Ce document de groupe de travail fournit une Úvaluation et une critique de la recherche participative, et ce spÚcifiquement dans les sciences sociales et l'agronomie (Agriculture, Nutrition, Alimentation). Passant en revue la littÚrature sur la recherche participative et sur son origine, ce document rÚsume les mÚthodologies participatives fondamentales et souligne leurs limites. Les implications de la recherche participative pour le CRDI sont mises en avant, notamment leurs apport en termes d'Úvaluation de projets.
Methods on the move : a review of the veterinary uses of participatory approaches and methods focussing on experiences in dryland Africa
In this literature review, the author, in describing the origins of participatory approaches and methods, discusses their application in animal health services and research in developing countries. The focus is on dryland areas of Africa particularly pastoral and agropastoral areas of the Greater Horn of Africa. The author reports that most experiences with veterinary uses of participatory approaches and methods remains with community based animal health projects and have proved to be more effective in comparison to more conventional approaches to service delivery. He also contends that while participatory methods are being used increasingly by epidemiologists, in general, there is a continued reliance on conventional survey tools such as questionnaires. He is of the view that as veterinary epidemiology has a history of borrowing from other disciplines it may be helpful to consider participatory methods including quantitative and qualitative perspectives and enhance the understanding of animal health and well being.
Participatory research into health and related needs of residents in Efaye, New Hanover, Kwazulu-Natal, South Africa
This paper is a report on an assessment of health and related needs as experienced and perceived by residents in Efaye, a rural community in the New Hanover area, KwaZulu-Natal. It was carried out in association with the New Hanover Primary Health Care and Development Programme, which aims to promote healthy villages and improve primary health care in local communities. Following a three day training course the research team worked with local residents to represent and analyse issues such as perceptions of health and well-being, access to health services, why people use different health services, perceptions of health problems and priority needs for action and ideas for action plans. Planning for action and further research remain in process. This assessment represents the beginning of a planned ongoing process of participatory research and action by other rural communities in the New Hanover Health District.
This report summarizes the result of the 2nd Internal evaluation of the ongoing 4th phase implementation of the 'Rural Family and Welfare Project'. The evaluation objective was not only to assess the current progress of the project and the willingness of the actors at the village level to sustain the program but also to 'test relatively new methodological approaches, mainly PRA, in order to further strengthen grassroot participation'. In doing so the report devotes a great deal of attention to exploring the ideology and rational behind the 'PRA approach' to M&E and provides an extremely useful summary of the key issues involved (in Chapters 1 and 2). There were six main methods applied in this evaluation: 'Rapport building with participants', 'Transect walks', 'Matrix scoring and ranking', 'Trend and situation analysis', 'Dramatized case study/role play' and 'Balloon opinion analysis'. Each of these methods are well introduced in the first two introductory chapters, while the results generated from their application are provided in the remainder of the report. An extensive bibliography is also provided in Chapter 7. This report presents a powerful, and well argued, case for the use of both PRA methods and a 'PRA orientation' in M&E activities (as the reported highly positive impact of these evaluation activities illustrates) while, in addition, it provides a well structured basic reference source for those interested in implementing such activities.