Inclusive or ethical community engagement (ECE) underpins the SIAGI way of working and is pivotal role in the quest for more equitable and sustainable agricultural development. In SIAGI, researchers, NGO practitioners and government partners are working together with local communities to ensure development activities are more inclusive and equitable.
ECE draws on the rich history of participatory development practice recognising that the very poor and marginalised, including women and the landless, are typically excluded from development processes and do not reap its benefits. ECE strives to facilitate the inclusion of individuals and groups in collaborative and participatory decision-making.
Under an ECE approach, the poor are given the opportunity to offer insights and perspectives from their own unique positions and to build this capacity within individuals and the community, increasing the sustainability of interventions. SIAGI has applied an ECE approach to a range of activities including formation of more equitable water user groups and more inclusive value chain development.
The project has developed a set of ECE principles and practices to guide practitioners in planning and implementing research activities. These are available here.