Monday, May 21, 2007

Popular Education Bookshelf - 2 - Participatory Evaluation

Popular Education and Participatory Evaluation

"Participatory" is a tricky keyword. And, though many people tend to think of popular education and participatory education as synonymous, this is a mistake. I would say that popular education always includes using so-called participatory methods and has, what you could call a participatory ethic. But participatory approaches are not necessarily popular education. The big difference, i would say, has to do with the radical critique of power that is a central feature of popular education. And, while there are certainly naive interpretations of popular education that ignore its radical elements, i think this is an unavoidable tendency and a necessary struggle. But "participatory" is a trickier matter. It is the sort of term that can mean all things to all people. But, when it comes to participatory research, participatory action research, participatory rural appraisal and participatory evaluation i think it important both to critique and to affirm the interconnections with popular education. But more on this will have to wait for a future post. Meanwhile, having recently been asked for resources on participatory evaluation i dug up some research i'd done some time ago. There are a handful of manuals on participatory evaluation that are well-worth working with. Though you can't depend on the manuals themselves to advocate for a popular education ethic and politic, there is a strong affinity. The approaches in these manuals are very adaptable to popular education contexts. Here they are:

No comments: