ERIC Number: ED342973
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1988-Nov-23
Participatory Research for Primary Health Care.
Cassara, Beverly B.
Participatory research began as a reaction to traditional social science research methodology, which tended to make persons into objects of study. It had its beginnings in Tanzania around 1970, when a group of farmers participated in research to assess and solve the problem of losses of grain harvests. The process grew out of the philosophy of Paulo Freire, which placed the locus of research with the people themselves in any situation where social transformation was the ultimate goal. It included a combination of research, education, and action. A facilitator must be with the people on an ongoing basis, have patience, and provide education in very informal ways. Documentation can occur without any written process. An illustrative case is that of a group of women in India who improved their situation through popular theater. The process was as follows: the women designed productions to initiate discussion, reworked them to portray the problem realistically, and then showed possible scenarios for correcting the problem. Another project in Appalachia shows how indigenous leaders representing a number of groups were trained to solve the problem of a low tax base associated with strip-mined land. Participatory research has been used in many ways to promote primary health care. Results are slow, however, and success may have to be redefined. (YLB)
Descriptors: Action Research, Adult Education, Citizen Participation, Community Action, Community Control, Community Involvement, Developing Nations, Foreign Countries, Participative Decision Making, Participatory Research, Primary Health Care, Research Methodology, Social Action, Social Change, Social Science Research, Theory Practice Relationship
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Women's Conference (East Lansing, MI, November 23, 1988).