978-1-84277-461-8 / 9781842774618

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About the book:

Participation is a popular approach to project implementation, policy-making and governance in both developing and developed countries. Recently, however, it has become fashionable to dismiss participation as more rhetoric than substance, and subject to manipulation by those intent on pursuing their own agendas under cover of community consent. This books seeks to rebut this simplistic conclusion. It describes and analyses new experiments in participation from a wide range of situations that show how, far from being a redundant and depoliticizing concept, participation can be linked to genuinely transformative processes and outcomes - provided that a political and not a technocratic approach is taken. It examines the recent convergence between participatory development and participatory governance, and the role of all the main actors - the state, civil society and donor agencies. It takes contemporary advances in development theory into account and proposes theoretical and practical ways forward.

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