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Evaluation and utilization of traditional methods of communication in Cameroon's central, southern, eastern and extreme northern regions : case study 20

FOOD AND AGRICULTURE ORGANIZATION (FAO). Communication for Development Group
August 2003

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This study's main objectives are to evaluate traditional means of communication; to note their constraints; to select the traditional methods which can best be used for the diffusion of information and to devise a strategy for implementing the selected method of traditional communication. The methodology of this survey is based on the Active Method of Participative Research.
The study illustrates that the traditional media for communication in Cameroon are: the gong and songs accompanied by dances (in all of the surveyed provinces); the xylophone (in the center and south); griot [travelling poet] and balafon (in the east); colleagues of the traditional chiefs (Lawanes, Djaoros); and messengers of traditional chiefs or muezzins (extreme north).There are numerous constraints to using individuals in devising communications strategies: a lack of trained musicians, the lack of initiative on the part of the village elders, the disinterest of the youth, conflict among the different generations, the proliferation of modern communications technologies, the complexity of training in various methods, the possible alteration of messages, a lack of motivation and the slow speed of transmission. The study notes that the best methods for the diffusion of information in the regions surveyed in Cameroon are: the gong, the colleagues and messengers of traditional chiefs to organize village meetings in which reproductive health issues could be raised, singing and dancing, travelling poets and xylophones.
In order to devise effective strategies for conveying messages about reproductive health through these traditional methods of communication, traditional authorities must be engaged early on in the process and informed of the importance of these means of communication; qualified individuals must be identified as resources and others trained; and a training of trainers must be conducted

Revisiting the "magic box" : case studies in local appropriation of information and communication technologies (ICTs)

BATCHELOR, Simon
O’FARRELL, Clare
2003

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This book looks at the way communities and groups in developing countries are appropriating information and communication technologies (ICTs) to address their needs. It finds that ICTs are being integrated into wider community-based activities and adapted to fit different contexts. It follows on from the paper "Discovering the Magic Box". It finds that there are still few examples of community-driven and locally appropriated ICT initiatives and an absence of standards or guidelines to evaluate ICT-based projects. The book includes some analytical frameworks and indicators to identify good practice and evidence of impact A significant development has been in the growth of telecommunications, in particular mobile phones, that are relatively cheap and powerful tools for poor communities, even in remote areas. The book concludes that the power of oral communication through telephones and radio cannot be underestimated. The book proposes that the main challenge is to adapt the new, usually computer-based ICTs to the needs of poor, predominantly oral-based communities so that they can be appropriated effectively and quickly

Addressing the impact of HIV/AIDS on ministries of agriculture : focus on eastern and southern Africa

TOPOUZIS, Daphne
2003

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This joint FAO/UNAIDS study is the first to examine the full range of implications of HIV/AIDS for Ministries of Agriculture (MoAs) in eastern and southern Africa. It describes structural changes in the smallholder agriculture sector including changing farming systems (as household cultivation shifts from cash crops to subsistence crops and from labour-intensive to labour-extensive crops); and changes in the age structure and quality of the agricultural labour force as more elderly people and children assume a greater role in farming. Four areas of HIV/AIDS impact are analysed in detail: (1) MoA staff vulnerability to HIV infection and AIDS impact; (2) the disruption of MoA operations and the erosion of capacity to respond to the challenges being posed by the HIV epidemic; (3) the increased vulnerability of MoA clients to food and livelihood insecurity; (4) the relevance of certain MoA policies, strategies and programmes in view of the conditions being created by HIV/AIDS

Monitoring and evaluating stakeholder participation in agriculture and rural development projects : a literature review

KARL, Marilee
2000

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This article reviews the current literature on the subject, and also highlights three key methodological issues to be addressed: how to assess the degree and quality of participation; how to measure the costs and benefits of participation to the stakeholders involved; and how to assess the impact of that participation on desired project outputs, project performance and sustainability. An annotated bibliography is also provided

Voices for change : rural woman and communication

BALIT, Silvia
COMMUNICATION FOR DEVELOPMENT GROUP
1999

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This book describes how, in the current climate of political and socio-economic change, communication can play a decisive role in promoting food security and rural development. By fostering a dialogue between rural people and other sectors of society, communication processes can empower both women and men to provide information and knowledge as a basis for change and innovation. It can give rural women a voice to advocate changes in policies, attitudes and social behaviour or customs that negatively affect them. The book briefly explores these complicated ideas, focussing on how communication processes can be harnessed. It then describes how different technologies, from the internet, video and radio, to traditional media, can be used. It is illustrated with brief case studies throughout

The internet and rural and agricultural development : an integrated approach

RICHARDSON, Don
1997

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Discusses the potential benefits of using the Internet for rural / agricultural development. Contextualises the growth of the internet in development initiatives and addresses the potential of the internet in specific areas, eg community development, research/education, small and medium enterprise development, and news media. Finallly, identifies several areas of best practice to guide effective use of the internet. Recommends engaging intermediary agencies involved in (project support, research, extension, health etc) in internet initiatives, as well as stakeholders and intended beneficiaries. Warns against the widening information gap between haves and have-nots

Effects of HIV/AIDS on farming systems in Eastern Africa

FOOD AND AGRICULTURE ORGANIZATION OF THE UNITED NATIONS (FAO). Farm Management and Production Economics Service
1995

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A detailed account of a UNDP-funded study in three eastern African countries of the impact of HIV/AIDS on rural populations, their livelihoods and their farming systems. Considers direct and indirect costs, and the impact on the transmission of knowledge about farming

Understanding farmers' communication networks : an experience in the Philippines

COMMUNICATION FOR DEVELOPMENT GROUP
1995

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This case study addresses the need to improve the exchange of relevant agricultural information between research, extension networks and farmers in five regions of the Philippines. It focuses on developing an approach to map the communication networks which exist in an agricultural system and to identify the main actors which play a role in shaping agricultural and rural development

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