Participation, Negotiation and Poverty: Encountering the Power of Images: Designing Pro-Poor Development Programmes


This title was first published in 2003. Illustrated with in-depth empirical case studies from rural Malawi, this book critically examines the extent to which participation and negotiation are the mechanisms for empowerment of the poor towards poverty reduction. It provides a comparative view of the interface between NGOs and local people in terms of the images they form of the different aspects and forms of NGO assistance and shows that numerous image conflicts occur when stakeholders with different agendas and from different life worlds interact. An innovative theory is derived from this comparative analysis of image interactions which could assist project managers in improving the design and implementation of projects that are meant for social transformation. It argues that development agencies should continually problematize these image interfaces during participation or negotiation if the poor are to effectively engage with them and their environments and suggests some practical ways of doing so. This volume: -tackles political questions implicit in the practice of participation and negotiation at the interface between people and NGOs, as development agencies in projects -deals with difficulties of bringing the poor into picture in the context of power differences -provides a research approach that could be used to explore different interfaces between practitioners, researchers, and the poor beyond palliative forms of generating or gathering 'perceptions of the people' -uses the concept of 'image-conflicts', to delve into ongoing controversies of how people decide and act, which makes the analysis of empowerment problematic -includes lively and analytical debates, making the book readable and relevant to practitioners and researchers alike.

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Taylor & Francis Ltd
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