Improving Project Success through Effective Communication and Participation

Independent Evaluation at the Asian Development Bank

Written by Liz Biglang-awa and George Bestari.

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Copyright 2011 © Independent Evaluation at Asian Development Bank

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Table of Contents


Highlights of Lessons




Communication, specifically one that is participatory, is essential in all facets of development work. Participatory communication can be defined as a balanced, two-way information sharing wherein information can flow horizontally, vertically, and iteratively. The use of various types of communication media enables stakeholders (i.e., government, the private sector, and civil society) to participate in the development process, and hence, allows them to influence or contribute to the design, implementation, and monitoring of a development activity. Notwithstanding the level of participation, communication can contribute to increasing awareness, fostering behavioral changes, facilitating mobilization, and establishing partnerships in pursuit of common goals. However, the lack of it can also break down negotiations, limit alternatives to addressing problems, constrain benefit distribution of development interventions, lead to marginalization of stakeholders and, ultimately, restrict the attainment of desired outcomes.

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