« Previous | of | Next »

Participatory development communication: a West African agenda

Agricultural Communications Documentation Center (ACDC)
Bessette, Guy (main author), Rajasunderam, C.V. (author)
Publication Date:
USA: Canadian-based International Development Research Centre
Agricultural Communications Documentation Center, Funk Library, University of Illinois Box: 141
Subject Term:
Africa, communication methods, development, development communication, participation, women, youth, informal education, rural
138 p., This publication represents a milestone in the formulation of a viable development communication program within the International Development Research Centre (IDRC). More than 2 years ago, it was realized that a critical link was missing in the information chain that formed the basis of the Centre's information sciences and systems program. There is demonstrable evidence that for over twenty years the Centre has invested in an effective program in the processing, manipulation, and dissemination of information in support of the development process. What was equally evident was the absence of a dedicated program related to the "communication" processes. There was an absence of research initiatives that examined how information was being received, acted upon, assessed by the various target groups, and perhaps most importantly, how this assessment was communicated back to those who were responsible for the original messages. Without this critical link in the information chain, there could be no real success in furthering the development process. Thus, 2 years ago, a subprogram within the information sciences and systems program was created. This development communication program took the name of "CIME" to reflect the interrelations between Communication at the grassroots level, the exchange of Information, two-way Media, and nonformal Education. This publication presents the conceptual framework which led to the articulation of the CIME program, and explains in detail how it was formulated, with references to the conclusions of a regional meeting of Central and West African nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) held in Burkina Faso, in November 1994. It also contains the conclusions of another meeting in Canada, in February 1995, organized to discuss various aspects of the program with Canadian experts in development communication and representatives of African NGOs taking part in the program in West Africa. Another interesting dimension of this publication is that there is something for everyone interested in development communication. There are valuable inputs on the use of participatory communication for nonformal education, and on the specific needs of women and young girls and the role they can play as communicators within their community. [Publishers abstract]