The Food and Agriculture Organization has released new guides to help managers and field workers incorporate social conditions and concerns when planning or implementing a development program.
The three user guides are part of FAO’s latest publication, dubbed “Social Analysis for Agriculture and Rural Investment Projects.” Ida Christensen of the agency’s Investment Center Division described the guides as a toolkit to understand the factors that affect the livelihood of people in rural areas.
“In order to formulate effective policies and programs, we need to ask questions like: How is poverty defined by people in a given community or household? How do poverty and vulnerability affect people differently in urban/rural areas, or in female-headed versus male-headed households,” Christensen said.
The three guides target different groups of professionals involved in project planning, design, implementation and evaluation:
Manager’s guide: Designed to raise managers’ and team leaders’ awareness of social analysis and help them apply related skills to agriculture and rural development projects.
Practitioner’s guide: Outlines a conceptual framework on how to carry out social analysis and design project activities based on a study’s findings.
Field guide: Includes checklists on how to collect data at various levels, integrate social analysis into missions, identify field tools for social analysis, and other practical information to guide fieldwork.
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