Challenges to Participation: Lessons from Participatory Action Research with Community Forest User Groups in Nepal
Keywords:participatory action research, community forestry, participation, adaptation, monitoring
Participatory approach to development is being increasingly tempered with criticisms that points out failure to address deeper issues of power relations. This article examines the challenges of participatory approaches to natural resource management drawing lessons from a participatory action research (PAR) with community forest user groups (CFUGs) in Nepal. Evidences show that the PAR process was effective in addressing the socio-political as well as institutional constraints at the CFUG level. Several positive livelihood impacts were also noted as a result of applying the process, although the exact nature of these impacts varied between the research sites. Some major steps of the PAR process were found to be effective and therefore were adapted by CFUGs both in the research sites and beyond.
Key words: participatory action research, community forestry, participation, adaptation, monitoring
Full text is available at the ForestAction website
Journal of Forest and Livelihood 6(1) February 2007 pp.70-78