This book is a critical guide to conducting investigations under time- and resource-pressured conditions, equipping readers with the key skills and approaches for research designed to influence or inform development policies. Unlike a simple 'how to' guide, Research Skills for Policy and Development also provides a critique of various methods and situates these approaches within 'real life' organisational settings, enabling those working in or studying development to locate, evaluate and use relevant information quickly but rigorously.
The successor to Finding Out Fast (SAGE, 1998) it reflects the changes in development management theories and practice over the last seven years, and includes new material and advice on critical use of the web as a resource and research tool. It is essential reading for development managers in NGOs and public sector agencies as well as students of development management and development studies more generally.
PART ONE: CONCEPTUALIZING POLICY-RELATED INVESTIGATION Information Needs and Policy Change - Stephen Potter and Ramaya Subrahmanian Boundaries for Thinking in Action - Chris Blackmore and Ray Ison Grabbing Attention - Joseph Hanlon Communicating Results - Joanna Chataway, Avril Joffe and Jill Mordaunt PART TWO: THINKING WITH DOCUMENTS Interrogating Information Through a Literature Study - Stephanie Barrientos Interpreting Institutional Discourses - Bridget O'Laughlin PART THREE: THINKING WITH PEOPLE People as Informants - Philip Woodhouse Investigation as Empowerment - Hazel Johnson and Linda Mayoux Using Participatory Methods Doing Incorrect Research - Dina Abbott The Importance of the Subjective and the Personal in Researching Poverty PART FOUR: BRINGING IN DATA Thinking with Quantitative Data - Chandan Mukherjee and Marc Wuyts Using Evidence in Advocacy - Sue Mayer Organizational Assessments and Institutional Footprints - Alan Thomas Challenging cases - Alan Thomas Conclusion - Alan Thomas and Joanna Chataway