How empowerment happens: devolving management to local people in Vietnam and Pakistan

admin - August 22, 2013

Another one of the fascinating case studies dug up by Sophie King for my recent UN paper on ‘The Role of the State in Empowering Poor and Excluded Groups and Individuals’. This one looks at two examples of devolution that seem to work Devolving forest management to local people, Dak Lak, Vietnam This is from an FAO case study and an OECD paper By the …

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Paradigms, lock-ins and liberations: Robert Chambers on rice and shit

admin - September 12, 2012

 Following my review of his new book, and Robert’s thoughts on immersion programmes (which generated some great comments), here is a third and final piece from Provocations for Development A lock-in is a paradigmatic syndrome in which there is strong mutually-supporting inflexibility. Let us examine two examples of paradigmatic lock-ins which have been comprehensively turned on their heads to create new counter-intuitive, counter-commonsense, syndromes of …

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What should Oxfam be doing on water?

admin - September 2, 2011

Just spent an intense couple of days at Oxfam Reflects, a biannual event where a mix of staff, partners and a sprinkling of professors and other wonks shut themselves away to talk through a thematic issue that is confusing the organization and needs a bit of kicking around. This one was on water – trying to cover both Oxfam’s traditional specialism in water, sanitation and …

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Inspiring action on shit (getting rid of it) – guest post from Robert Chambers

admin - May 30, 2011

Robert Chambers is a participatory development guru with a nice line in modesty. The one line bio he sent for this post reads ‘Robert Chambers is a research associate at the Institute of Development Studies, Sussex, currently working on Community-Led Total Sanitation’. Well OK, but he’s also author of books that have changed the way we see development, such as Whose Reality Counts? and Revolutions …

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Today's World Water Day, and here's what you need to be reading/watching

admin - March 22, 2010

It’s world water day Bad watsan ruins lives but gets ignored. So act! Today is world water day, and reader Steve Cockburn, coordinator of a global coalition called End Water Poverty, of which Oxfam is a member, has kindly done my job for me by sending over some links and analysis. This is all him, not me:  ‘UNICEF/WHO last week released their Joint Monitoring Programme …

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