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Factors Affecting Rural Facilitators’ Role: Iran

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Author(s): Farideh Azimi | Mohammad Bagher Kamali

Journal: International Journal of Agricultural Management and Development
ISSN 2159-5852

Volume: 1;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 7;
Date: 2011;
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Keywords: Rural female facilitators | Facilitation | Rural development | Appreciative inquiry | Iran

ABSTRACT
This study aimed to examine key factors affecting rural female facilitators’ role in participatory rural developmentin Tehran Province. Since the researchers intended to have abetter insight into the facilitators’ role and employ inquiry as alearning forum for bringing about changes for all participants,they preferred to use a case study based upon an appreciativeinquiry method. The study divided the factors affecting thefacilitators’ role into two main categories: driving factors andpreventing factors. The former are: two-way communication,election of rural eligible facilitators, participation, sense ofresponsibility, and the latter are: cultural and tribal fanaticism,lack of permanent female extension workers and frequentmanagement changes. Appreciative inquiry as a positive modeof action research could facilitate the process of education andcommunication for all stakeholders. We suggested that thereshould be a shift from the extension as a knowledge transfer tofacilitation as people’s own knowledge creation. This studyshowed that appreciative inquiry could facilitate the process ofchange and gender-awareness. This research method couldalso facilitate mutual communication between the rural facilitatorsand extension workers.

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