Practical Approaches to Managing International Development Projects in the Face of Complexity:Session 2. community engagement

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Published on February 18, 2014

Author: emanuelsouvairan

Source: slideshare.net

Practical Approaches to Managing International Development Projects in the Face of Complexity SESSION 2: COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT, PARTICIPATION AND ACCOUNTABILITY EMANUEL SOUVAIRAN JANUARY 2014 THIS PRESENTATION WILL BE MADE AVAILABLE TO STUDENTS VIA SLIDESHARE

Participatory approaches “PEOPLE CANNOT BE DEVELOPED. THEY CAN ONLY DEVELOP THEMSELVES.”

Conducting a household survey YOU ARE PART OF A SMALL RURAL COMMUNITY IN TANZANIA. THE COMMUNITY LEADERS (COMMUNITY COUNCIL) IS MADE UP OF 6 MEN FROM THE COMMUNITY AND 2 WOMEN

The cultural ‘iceberg’ Most things in a community are BELOW the surface – just like an iceberg! It takes a long time to get to know another culture.

What do we mean by Participation?

Do we actively facilitate participation?

Techniques and methods DIAGRAMMING, MAPPING AND MODELING - TRANSECTS - MAPS (RESOURCE, SOCIAL, FARM) - VENN DIAGRAMS - SEASONAL ANALYSIS - HISTORICAL ANALYSIS (TIME LINES, TREND LINES, ACTIVITY PROFILES) RANKING AND SCORING - PAIR WISE RANKING - MATRIX RANKING - MATRIX SCORING - WELL-BEING ANALYSIS AND WEALTH RANKING - PROPORTIONAL PILING - PIE CHARTS PROBLEM ANALYSIS - IDENTIFICATION AND SPECIFICATION - CAUSAL CHAINING - PRIORITIZATION

Handing over the stick THE MOST IMPORTANT STEP IN THE PRA PROCESS IS “HANDING OVER THE STICK” TO THE PEOPLE. THE PEOPLE ANALYZE THEIR OWN SITUATION. PLAN ACTIONS AND IMPLEMENT. PEOPLE ARE CREATIVE AND CAPABLE, AND CAN AND SHOULD DO MUCH OF THERE WON INVESTIGATION, ANALYSIS AND PLANNING. OUTSIDERS HAVE ROLES AS CONVENORS, CATALYSTS AND FACILITATORS.

Three types of participatory planning EXPLORATORY: PRA TOOLS AND TECHNIQUES CAN BE USED TO DIAGNOSE THE CURRENT SITUATION SUCH AS FARMING SYSTEM, HEALTH AND HEALTH FACILITIES, HYGIENE AND SANITATION, GENDER ANALYSIS LIVELIHOODS ETC. TOPICAL: APPLICATION OF PRA TO SPECIFIC AREA OF CONCERN I.E. SOIL FERTILITY SURVEY, WATER, SPECIFIC DISEASE, DIET INCOME SOURCES ETC. DETAILED STUDIES. PROBLEM SOLVING: DIAGNOSIS OF PROBLEMS AND SUGGESTIONS OF SOLUTION WITH PARTICIPATION OF PEOPLE.

Participatory Programme Development (PPD) is the process of working in partnership with communities to develop feasible, desirable and sustainable programmes.

Participatory methods

The art of facilitation 1. THE FACILITATOR HOLDS THE POWER USE LOCAL LANGUAGE SPEAKERS AS FACILITATORS, FACILITATORS ALSO NEED CULTURALLY SPECIFIC FACILITATION SKILLS 2. FOCUS ON THE PROCESS AND THE ENVIRONMENT 3. USE TRIANGULATION AIM TO GATHER AT LEAST THREE PERSPECTIVES ON ANY ISSUE OR PIECE OF INFORMATION. TRIANGULATION HELPS TO VERIFY DATA, MINIMISE BIAS, PROBE DEEPER INTO AN ISSUE, AND TO DIFFERENTIATE BETWEEN FACT, OPINION AND RUMOUR.

The role of facilitators A good facilitator: - strives to foster everyone’s participation - is a patient and active listener - is willing to learn - projects self-confidence without arrogance - respects all ideas raised by participants - encourages women, poor and other often-marginalized groups to voice their ideas - adapts methods to situations without clinging to rigid agendas - expresses sensitivity to the mood and sensibilities of participants - creates a warm atmosphere - has a sense of humour— participatory learning is enjoyable!

Examples of participatory methods #1: Problem Ranking

Examples of participatory methods #1: Problem Ranking

Examples of participatory methods #2 Capacity Assessment

Examples of participatory methods #3: Transect Walk PROCESS • Identify a group of local people having some knowledge of the area and who are willing to walk with you for the exercise. • Explain the purpose of a transect to the people. In consultation with the community members, define the list of indicators that will be analysed during the walk. Involve them in the decision-making process regarding the transect path you should take. • Let the people show you their village by following the transect path that was agreed upon. Do not hesitate to make modifications if it is required. Also carry the list of parameters and preferably the resource map for the walk. It is a useful reference during observation and discussions en route. • Observe the surroundings. Encourage people to explain things as you move. Take detailed notes. • If necessary, stop at certain locations for detailed discussions on emerging issues. Use this opportunity to clarify issues emerging from the social map, resource map and other methods. • Collect and bring some leaves, grass, etc. which you find interesting but are not familiar with. It helps to refer to them in discussions that will follow and also in documentation. • After returning, draw the transect on a large sheet of paper. Let the local people take the lead in drawing the transect diagram. Use your notes and the notes of other members of the transect team while making the diagram. • Show the transect to others in the locality and ask them to give their opinion. • Triangulate the findings and thank the participants for their active involvement.

Venn diagram Institutional map of a Zambian village, as seen by a focus group of 17 women MPEWA Village, Eastern Province, 28.9.93 Drawn on ground with chalk. The women explained their Venn diagram, saying for example: the headman is seen as very important--he helped bring the grinding mill to the village; he settles social conflicts and mobilizes the community to help the needy. the traditional healer is seen as more accessible (drawn inside the community) than the hospital (drawn outside). the chief is drawn outside the community since he does not visit. the church is placed outside the community as it "doesn't seem to be helping much anymore" though its spiritual function is still seen as important.

Venn Diagram Hand-drawn facsimile of a Venn diagram done in Sutukunding, The Gambia, during discussion of land tenure, livestock ownership, and livelihood security.

Social map showing wealth ranking in a village in West Bengal, India A PRA in West Bengal focused on learning about local people's perceptions of rural poverty. Social mapping was used to enable villagers to identify the poorer households and to rank them using their own indicators of poverty. The social map of one village, Berapal, was drawn by a group of villagers gathered in a central meeting place. Once the map was drawn, the participants identified four different wealth groups, from the poorest of the poor to the richest. The locally determined indicators of poverty included households headed by widows and agricultural laborers who had no land and no regular source of income or food.

Preference Ranking Matrix (India) A group of village women ranked their preferences for a number of different income-generating activities using a simple matrixranking technique. After selecting the items to be ranked, the women identified their own criteria, including the amount of time required by the activity and the level of profit possible. Pictures and symbols were used to represent the different items and criteria, and the women used a five-point scoring system to compare the different options. The outcome, shown below, reveals, for example, that brick making is one of the most profitable activities but also requires additional labor and a lot of hard work by the women themselves. Other activities, such as selling leaves as plates, are less profitable but also less timeconsuming and labor-intensive ways of earning cash.

Daily activity charts drawn by a group of widows in Zambia The women who drew these charts described the differences between the rainy and dry season patterns. In the dry season, the women must spend much longer getting water from the well and collecting firewood every day to stockpile it in readiness for the rainy season. When the rains come, things are much busier and the women's days are much longer because of all the work to be done in the fields.

Seasonal calendar of poverty, drawn by a group of villagers in Nyamira, Kenya * Zeros (0) in table represent stones used by participants to indicate the degree of change by month. Thus, three zeros in the January column for "Light Meals" means that light meals are three times more likely that month than they are in March or April. This calendar was constructed using leaves, stones, and symbols to identify each item, and participants then used a stick to mark the seasonal differences on the ground. The greatest stress was found to be from December to May, a period when food stocks, employment opportunities, and income are at the lowest. People cope by begging for food and eating "lighter meals." During this period, men and, to a much lesser extent, women engage in seasonal migration to bigger farms, tea estates or wherever they can find work. The highest incidence of disease, especially malaria and diarrhea, coincides with the long rainy season from April to July.

The cultural ‘iceberg’ Most things in a community are BELOW the surface – just like an iceberg! It takes a long time to get to know another culture.

Community Feedback EXPLICIT EFFORTS TO LISTEN TO AND RESPOND TO LOCAL FEEDBACK, REPRESENT A SMALL STEP TOWARDS THE PARADIGM SHIFT THAT NEEDS TO OCCUR WITHIN INDIVIDUAL AID AGENCIES AND IN THE AID SYSTEM AS A WHOLE. IF ORGANIZATIONS CAN LISTEN WELL, THERE IS HOPE THAT WE CAN MEANINGFULLY ENGAGE PEOPLE IN EFFORTS THAT ARE MEANT TO IMPROVE THEIR LIVES IN ALL CONTEXTS.

Accountability

How can we ensure that aid meets the needs of the population? 1. MAKE TIME TO LISTEN 2. SLOW DOWN. TAKE TIME TO UNDERSTAND PEOPLE’S CAPACITIES, PRIORITIES, PREFERENCES, AND IDEAS. THROUGHOUT ALL STAGES AND TYPES OF PROGRAMS, LOCAL PEOPLE WANT DONORS AND AID AGENCIES TO BE OPEN TO LISTENING AND DISCUSSING: •THE LOCAL CONTEXT AND REALITIES; •EXTERNAL AND INTERNAL AGENDAS; •EXPECTATIONS; •ASSUMPTIONS AND DEFINITIONS BEHIND APPROACHES; •PROCESS OR CRITERIA FOR SELECTING WHAT TYPES OF ASSISTANCE WILL BE PROVIDED AND WHO SHOULD BENEFIT FROM IT; •EXIT STRATEGIES.

How can we ensure that aid meets the needs of the population? 3. BE ACCOUNTABLE TO THOSE AFFECTED BY THE DISASTER, NOT JUST TO DONORS. MECHANISMS THAT AIM TO IMPROVE ‘UPWARD ACCOUNTABILITY’ UNDERMINE THE CORE PROCESS OF EMPOWERMENT. THE PRIMARY PURPOSE OF UPWARD ACCOUNTABILITY IS TO MEET DONORS’ IMPORTANT NEEDS TO UNDERSTAND HOW THEIR FUNDS ARE BEING USED, AND HAVE CONFIDENCE THAT THEY ARE BEING USED EFFECTIVELY AND APPROPRIATELY.

Three Goals of Accountability FINANCIAL ACCOUNTABILITY HAVE FUNDS BEEN PROPERLY USED OR HAS THERE BEEN FRAUD? EFFECTIVENESS ACCOUNTABILITY HAVE OBJECTIVES BEEN ACHIEVED? ARE BENEFICIARIES PLEASED WITH THE PROCESSES AND OUTCOMES? EFFICIENCY ACCOUNTABILITY HAVE THE LIMITED RESOURCES BEEN PUT TO THE BEST POSSIBLE USE TO PROVIDE VALUE FOR MONEY? WERE THE ACTIVITIES THE BEST OPTION FOR CONTRIBUTING TO THE MISSION?

Upward vs Downward Accountability IN UPWARD ACCOUNTABILITY, TYPICALLY SUCCESS IS JUDGED BY COMPARING ACTUAL ACTIVITIES TO THE PRE-DETERMINED ANALYSIS AND BUDGET. IT IS NOT HARD TO FIND POWERFUL EXAMPLES OF THE DELETERIOUS RESULTS OF THIS EFFECT. FOR EXAMPLE, THE TSUNAMI EVALUATION COALITION’S REPORT DESCRIBED INSTANCES OF HOUSES BUILT THAT LOCAL PEOPLE WOULD NEVER LIVE IN, THE RESULT OF NGOS FOCUSING ON COMPLETING ACTIVITIES WITHOUT FULLY UNDERSTANDING LOCAL PEOPLES’ PRIORITIES (TEC, 2006). THE PURPOSE OF ‘DOWNWARD ACCOUNTABILITY’ IS TO RELEASE POWER TO THOSE FURTHER DOWN THE AID CHAIN, FOR EXAMPLE FROM AN NGO TO ITS INTENDED BENEFICIARIES.

Accountability to Beneficiaries Checklist IN PRACTICAL TERMS, ACCOUNTABILITY TO BENEFICIARIES IS MADE UP OF FIVE COMPONENTS: 1.PROVIDING INFORMATION 2.REPRESENTING THE VULNERABLE 3.INVOLVING PEOPLE IN MAKING DECISIONS 4.A COMPLAINTS PROCEDURE 5.THE ATTITUDES OF NGO STAFF

Accountability to Beneficiaries Checklist ACCOUNTABILITY TO BENEFICIARIES BRINGS IMPORTANT PRACTICAL ADVANTAGES, INCLUDING: 1.INCREASING THE CHANCE THAT AN NGO’S ACTIVITIES MEET BENEFICIARIES’ REAL NEEDS 2.INCREASING THE OWNERSHIP THAT BENEFICIARIES FEEL TOWARDS AN NGO’S WORK, WHICH 3.IMPROVES THE CHANCE OF LONG-TERM IMPACT 4.SUPPORTING BENEFICIARIES’ SELF-RESPECT AND SELFCONFIDENCE 5.REDUCING THE RISK OF FRAUD, OR OF FUNDS BEING USED INEFFICIENTLY

Downward Accountability THIS GOES BEYOND INCREASING THE ABILITY OF BENEFICIARIES TO INFLUENCE AN NGO’S ACTIONS, FOR INSTANCE BY PARTICIPATING IN MAKING DECISIONS ABOUT PROJECT ACTIVITIES. IN ITS MOST EXTREME FORM, THE RELATIONSHIP IS REVERSED, SO THAT THE NGO EXPLICITLY AIMS TO PARTICIPATE IN THE BENEFICIARIES’ ACTIONS – CRUCIALLY, THE ACTIVITIES CARRIED OUT ARE LED AND OWNED BY THE BENEFICIARIES THEMSELVES.

Providing Information Good practice is to make information available Publicly, where local circumstances permit it. Providing information is a demonstration of respect. It also allows people to hold community representatives and NGO staff to account.

Representing the vulnerable Some community leaders may represent their interests; others may not. NGO staff need to identify representatives who speak for the specific groups of people they aim to help. They also need to design NGO activities to make it easy for busy or low-status people to get involved, and to help them strengthen their influence in local decision making.

Making decisions Encouraging people to be involved in making decisions, helps build the confidence and skills to influence other political decisions

Complaints procedures Successful businesses see an effective complaints procedure as an important way to get feedback and improve on meeting customer needs. Since NGOs exist to meet the needs of their beneficiaries, this is even more relevant.

Staff attitudes Our attitudes and beliefs affect our behaviour. It is very difficult for a person who does not feel respect to behave respectfully on a consistent basis.

Ideas on how to ensure transparency • POSTERS, LEAFLETS OR SIGNBOARDS OUTSIDE THE OFFICES • PRESENTATIONS AT REGULAR PUBLIC MEETINGS • USING MEDIA SUCH AS RADIO AND NEWSPAPERS • RIGHT TO INFORMATION POLICY OF THE ORGANISATION • PROVIDE INFORMATION ON LOCAL WEBSITE • PUBLIC AUDITS/ SOCIAL AUDITS • FACTSHEET WITH ANNUAL KEY INFORMATION • MULTI-STAKEHOLDER FORUMS

Ideas on how to ensure participation • ANNUAL MEETINGS WITH LOCAL PEOPLE • PUBLIC AUDITS/ SOCIAL AUDITS • INCLUSION OF PRIMARY STAKEHOLDERS IN STEERING COMMITTEES • COMMUNITY SCORECARDS • COORDINATING CALENDARS (FARMING AND HOUSE CHORE CALENDAR WITH THE ORGANISATION’S AVAILABILITY) • RADIO • PARTICIPATORY RURAL APPRAISAL TOOLS • STAFF TRAINING IN PARTICIPATION, FACILITATION AND SOCIAL INCLUSION

Ideas on how to ensure feedback mechanisms • PARTICIPATION IN MONITORING AND EVALUATION EXERCISES, • PUBLIC AUDITS • COMPLAINT BOXES IN PROJECT AREAS • COMPLAINT COMMITTEE • COMMUNITY SCORE CARDS • REGULAR FIELD VISITS OF PROJECT STAFF • REGULAR MEETINGS • SATISFACTION SURVEYS • INTERNET ONLINE COMPLAINT MECHANISM (INCLUDING CORRUPTION CASES) • STAFF ATTITUDES, MANAGERS TAKE THE LEAD IN CREATING OPEN AND LISTENING CULTURE.

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