Thursday, August 24, 2017

One day in 2030 or how to get participatory economic indicators

During the recent participative stakeholder workshop, not only we have tried to understand how stakeholder see their own production system involving in the future but also trying to understand what success would look like.

Traditionally, economist used GDP at national level, and income or ownership of assets to measure success. More money and more assets means wealth and therefore is success. Yet, the people we work with value many different things, such as family life, the access to traditional food, or getting a given position within the community. So success is more than money and we need to identify how this success can be measured.

two ladies making sure that their vision is taken into account into the future storylines
On the second day of the workshop, my colleagues of mine asked the stakeholder participant in stakeholder groups with similar interests to write down the story of one or two successful virtual characters, and describe a usual day in 2030.From that storyline, participants will have identify what are the indicators that the two characters are successful.

In Burkina Faso, the dairy processing lady was married to the butcher of the area. Their life will be shaped by a traditional Muslim life rhythm. Children will have access to schools, family will be supported by hired staff, and mobility will be improved as the family will own a car or at least a motor bike.

storyline from the pastoral group
the second part of the storyline

For the pastoral community, the successful life meant that they could maintain their traditional lifestyle but also with some modernization, such as aluminum mobile parks, motorbikes for improved mobility and cleared access rights to pasture.

From those storylines, many indicators could be identified. Participants then made an individual vote for the most important ones. Interesting in Burkina Faso, these were religious indicators, such as being able to visit Mecca, being able to follow Muslim rules and improved mobility, whereas in Ethiopia, high education for children and the adoption of new technologies came out more importantly.

The selected indicators from the different groups in Burkina Faso
To me, it was a new approach to get information from stakeholder about what they value, in a way that is very appealing and easy to stakeholder. I am quite impressed by the results we got.

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