Learning from the people: participatory rural appraisal, geography and rural development in the ‘new’ South Africa

Binns, T. and Hill, T.R. and Nel, E.L. (1997) Learning from the people: participatory rural appraisal, geography and rural development in the ‘new’ South Africa. Applied Geography, 17 (1). pp. 1-9. ISSN 0143-6228

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0143-6228(96)00024-0

Abstract

Top-down rural development strategies in Africa have generally not succeeded in raising living standards among the rural poor. It is argued that inappropriate development strategies have stemmed from methodologies that fail to appreciate the whole picture in rural communities, and in particular ignore local people's perceptions, needs and understanding. Participatory Rural Appraisal (PRA) represents a significant step forward in the design of methodologies and a selection of these techniques is evaluated. Many PRA methods have much in common with the field research methods that have been used by geographers over many years to interpret people-environment relationships. A research investigation in Eastern Cape Province, South Africa, suggests that geographers could have an important role to play in this area of applied research and, in particular, in the context of post-apartheid South Africa there is an urgent challenge to be met in promoting rural development in poor, former black Homeland areas.

Item Type:Article
Uncontrolled Keywords:PRA; participatory rural appraisal; geography; development; developing country; development strategy; geographical research; local participation; rural development; Eastern Cape Province; South Africa
Subjects:Y Unknown > Subjects to be assigned
Divisions:Faculty > Faculty of Science > Geography
ID Code:794
Deposited By:INVALID USER
Deposited On:23 Aug 2007
Last Modified:06 Jan 2012 16:19
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