The Participation Reader

The Participation Reader

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Calls for greater participation of those affected by development interventions have a long history. This expert reader explores the conceptual and methodological dimensions of participatory research and the politics and practice of participation in development.

Through excerpts from the texts that have inspired contemporary advocates of participation, accounts of the principles of participatory research and empirical studies that show some of the complexities of participation in practice, it offers a range of reflections on participation that will be of interest to those new to the field and experienced practitioners alike.

Bringing together for the first time classic and contemporary writings from a literature that spans a century, it offers a unique perspective on the possibilities and dilemmas that face those seeking to enable those affected by development projects, programmes and policies.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 464 pages
  • 156 x 232 x 30mm | 698.53g
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 1842774034
  • 9781842774038
  • 238,681

Table of contents

Part I - What is Participation?

1. A Ladder of Citizen Participation - Sherry R. Arnstein
2. The Many Faces of Participation - Matthias Stiefel and Marshall Wolfe
3. What is Meant by People's Participation? - N. C. Saxena
4. Participation's Place in Rural Development: Seeking Clarity Through Specificity - John Cohen and Norman Uphoff
5. Depoliticizing Development: the Uses and Abuses of Participation - Sarah White
6. Participation: the Ascendancy of a Buzzword in the Neo-Liberal Era - Pablo Alejandro Leal


Part II - Participatory Methodologies: Principles and Applications

7. Production and Diffusion of New Knowledge - Orlando Fals Borda
8. The Historical Roots and Contemporary Urges in Participatory Research - Rajesh Tandon
9. New Paradigm Research Manifesto - New Paradigm Research Group London
10. Doing Feminist Participatory Research - Patricia Maguire
11. Cooperative Inquiry - Peter Reason
12. PRA Five Years Later - Robert Chambers and Irene Guijt
13. Ten Myths About PRA - Ian Scoones
14. Growing From the Grassroots: Building Participatory Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation Methods in PARC - Janet Symes and Sa'ed Jasser
15. Tools for Empowerment: Community Exchanges - Sheela Patel
16. Citizens Juries: a Radical Alternative for Social Research - Tom Wakeford
17. Voices Aloud: Making Communication and Change Together - Oga Steve Abah
18. Powerful Grassroots Women Communicators: Participatory Video in Bangladesh - Renuka Bery and Sara Stuart


Part III - Community and Participatory Development: Principles and Practice

19. Managing Local Participation: Rhetoric and Reality - Robert Chambers
20. Community Participation: History, Concepts and Controversies - James Midgley
21. The Making and Marketing of Participatory Development - David Mosse
22. Whose Voices? Whose Choices? Reflections on Gender and Participatory Development - Andrea Cornwall
23. Ethnicity and Participatory Development Methods in Botswana: Some Participants Are to Be Seen and Not Heard - Tlamelo Mompati and Gerard Prinsen
24. Towards a Repoliticization of Participatory Development: Political Capabilities and Spaces of Empowerment - Glyn Williams


Part IV - Participaton in Governance

25. Towards Participatory Local Governance: Six Propositions for Discussion - John Gaventa
26. The Politics of Domesticating Participation in Rural India - Ranjita Mohanty
27. Aiding Policy? Civil society Engagement in Tanzania's PRSP - Elaina Mack
28. Participation Without Representation: Chiefs, Councils and Forestry Law in the West African Sahel - Jesse C. Ribo
29. Talking Politics in Participatory Governance - Gianpaolo Baocchi
30. Co-Governance for Accountability: Beyond 'Exit' and 'Voice' - John Ackerman


Part V - Participation as Collective Action: Mobilization, Insurgency and Struggle

31. Users as Citizens: Collective Action and the Local Governance of Welfare - Marion Barnes
32. Insurgency and Spaces of Active Citizenship: the Story of the Western Cape Anti-Eviction Campaign in South Africa - Faranak Miraftab and Shana Wills
33. Pedagogical Guerrillas, Armed Democrats and Revolutionary Counter-Publics: Examining Paradox in the Zapatista Uprising in Chiapas, Mexico - Josee Johnston
34. Bodies as Sites of Struggle: Naripokkho and the Movement for Women's Rights in Bangladesh - Shireen Huq
35. Citizenship: a Perverse Confluence - Evelina Dagnino
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Review quote

'Cornwall's Participation Reader, which brings together some of the most insightful writings on the discourses, politics and practice of participation in development since the 1960s, is a valuable document of record. The articles are lively, well written and provide the necessary critical engagement with one of the most contentious but often taken for granted ideas in development. The Participation Reader is certain to become a must read for all students, teachers, researchers and practitioners of development.'
Dzodzi Tsikata, University of Ghana

'Andrea Cornwall has created a powerful go-to volume on participation encompassing foundational literature, thoughtful reflections on processes and theories, insightful critiques and inspiring descriptions of participatory initiatives. Citizens, organizers, students and researchers will return to The Participation Reader again and again for grounded analyses of the problems and possibilities of "participation".'
Louise Fortmann, Berkeley

'This volume is a compelling and critical look at both the concept and practice of participation, a topic that has been afflicted, in the words of one its contributors, by "popularity without clarity". It is a comprehensive effort at advancing clarity, and offers convincing analyses of the oversimplification, depoliticization, and instrumentalization that has characterized the debates and discourse on participation in recent times. With an impressive array of writers, including leading participation theorists and practitioners from around the world, we are led systematically through definitions, principles, methodologies, case studies and critiques, and emerge with sharper conceptual and strategic insights for advancing the democratization project.'
Srilatha Batliwala, Scholar Associate, Association for Women's Rights in Development (AWID)
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About Paul Hunt

Andrea Cornwall is Professor of Anthropology and Development in the School of Global Studies at the University of Sussex. She is the author of Beneficiary, Consumer, Citizen (2000) and Democratizing Engagement and co-editor of Pathways to Participation (with Garett Pratt, 2003), Spaces for Change?(with Vera Schattan Coelho, 2006) and The Politics of Rights (with Maxine Molyneux, 09).
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