Participatory Approaches for Sustainable Land Use in Southeast Asia
Editor Andreas Neef
This work comprises in-depth analyses and discussion of Participatory Research and Development in action, with emphasis on the needs of rural communities in marginal regions of Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao P.D.R., Nepal, the Philippines, South China, Thailand and Vietnam. 38 scientists and development practitioners share their extensive multidisciplinary experience and discuss the relevance, application and pitfalls of participatory approaches to research and development. Most of the chapters evolved form papers presented at the International Workshop ?Participatory Technology Development and Local Knowledge for Sustainable Land Use in Southeast Asia', held from 6-7 June 2001 in Chiang Mai, Thailand. Examples from the field cover the participatory development of soil and water conservation technologies, gender-sensitive participatory methodologies, participation in priority-setting for agricultural research, the use of Geographic Information Systems in supporting participatory processes, and the benefits of using local knowledge in managing natural resources. While the contributions contain a wealth of methodological innovations and conceptual advances in participatory approaches, they also point to the conceptual and political limitations and various dangers of misuse of participation in research and development programs. Several, chapters provide evidence that a supportive institutional and socio-political framework is conditional for successfully scaling-up and institutionalizing participatory processes in government agencies and research organizations. Only then participatory approaches will remain relevant beyond the fashionable rhetoric of the mainstream participatory discourse. This book is a valuable contribution to the controversial discourse on Participatory Research and Development for scholars and development professionals.
150 x 210 mm