PLA 53: Tools for influencing power and policy

This edition of Participatory Learning and Action focuses on the Power Tools Initiative which aimed to develop tools to help people improve the policies and institutions which govern access to and use of natural resources.

Article, 01 December 2005
Participatory Learning and Action
A journal for newcomers and experienced practitioners alike.

PLA 53 coverDecember 2005
Guest editor: Sonja Vermeulen

This edition of Participatory Learning and Action is guest-edited by Sonja Vermeulen with articles written by eight partners from the Power Tools project.

Many people's lives involve the day-to-day management of natural resources. Such intimate interaction creates awareness of the technical, social and political obstacles to good management. Yet many of these people never have the opportunity to contribute to the definition of policies and institutions that govern their use of natural resources. The policy gap between the powerful and marginalised does not just involve the lack of available channels for participatory dialogue. Even when such channels exist, communication may fail due to fundamental differences in perception, expression and power between groups.

The Power Tools initiative set out to develop, test and circulate existing and new tools to bridge some of the key gaps in policy processes and content. These policy tools - tips, tactics and approaches - are designed to provide some practical help to people working to improve the policies and institutions that govern access to and use of natural resources.

This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License. Content can be freely reproduced for non-commercial purposes, provided the source is fully acknowledged. 

Follow the links below to download the whole issue or individual articles in pdf format.

Download the complete issue.



Power Tools

Power tools for participatory learning and action
Sonja Vermeulen

Power Tool: Accessing 'public' information

Information as power: making best use of India's Right to Information Law
Sharmistha Bose, Pankaj Lal and Sushil Saigal

Power Tool: Legal literacy camps

Law for the people: interactive approaches to legal literacy in India
Sanjay Upadhyay

Power Tool: Associations for business partnership

Stronger by association - strengthening the position of small and medium-scale forest enterprise in the Brazilian Amazon
Duncan Macqueen, Luciene Figueiredo, Frank Merry and Noemi Porro

Power Tool: Speaking for ourselves

It works! Speaking for ourselves - a development dialogue tool
Semalign Belay, Ismael Haro and Ben Irwin

Power Tool: Family portraits

Family portraits in Mali, Kenya and Tanzania
Katherine Cochrane

Power Tool: Interactive radio drama

Creating stakeholder ownership of biodiversity planning: lessons from India
Tejaswini Apte

Power Tool: Improving forest justice

Routes to justice: institutionalising participation in forest law enforcement
Cornelius Kazoora, Charles Tondo and Bob Kazungu

General section

Integrating Open Space Technology and Dynamic Facilitation
Phil Howard, Tim Galarneau, Jan Perez and Dave Shaw

Methodological diversity and creativity in agricultural innovation systems

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