Mawomo, Kenneth (2019) The dynamics of community participation: evidence from practice. Doctoral thesis, Keele University.

[thumbnail of MawomoPhD2019.pdf]

Download (3MB) | Preview


This study investigated the dynamics of community participation (CP) manifest in participatory processes, both formal (‘invited’ or ‘induced’) and informal (‘created’ or ‘organic’), in two Tswana speaking rural communities in Botswana, namely Mogonye and Molepolole. Specifically, the study examined, by way of comparison, how the ‘created’ (Motshelo) or ‘induced’ (MMDT) spaces for participation that are set up to regulate collective community engagement enable or constrain the control of decision-making processes by the poor and marginalised.
This investigation was motivated in part by the controversies that have led to a characterisation of CP as tyrannical and the prevalence of ‘elite capture’ in ‘induced’ forms of participation. The study was also inspired by the desire to assess what opportunities or ‘spaces’ that are ‘organic’ and development-oriented such as Motshelo can offer, and to explore the possibility of incorporating their insights into CP theory and practice as a means of addressing current theoretical shortcomings.
The study used a qualitative case study research design, with the construction and comparison of two case studies relying on interviewing and document analysis as main data collection methods complemented by the method of observation. The sampling strategy used to identify the research sites – participatory practices and villages - and interviewees was purposive: this strategy enabled the identification of contrasting cases and rich information sources that were served to elaborate emerging insights and theory.
The findings of the research reveal that both formal and informal forms of practice are inherently exclusionary, but their distinct dynamics mean that this proceeds in different ways. Despite their privileged position in CP theory, formal processes are in one way or the other, susceptible to ‘elite capture’ or the more pro-poor ‘elite intervention’ owing largely to the nature of their institutional requirements which constrain rather than enable participation among the very people that such spaces are intended to empower.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Divisions: Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > School of Social Science and Public Policy
Contributors: Cropper, Steve (Thesis advisor)
Depositing User: Lisa Bailey
Date Deposited: 13 Aug 2019 14:55
Last Modified: 26 Aug 2020 13:20

Actions (login required)

View Item
View Item