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'Teach a Man to Fish': The Sustainability Doctrine and Its Social Consequences

An analysis of the social consequences of the commitment to ''sustainability" in donor-funded AIDS programs. Using survey, interview, and ethnographic data from rural Malawi, the authors examine how efforts to mobilize and empower local communities affect three strata of Malawian society: 1) the villagers whom these programs are meant to help, 2) the insecure local elites whose efforts directly link programs to their intended beneficiaries, and more briefly, 3) the national elites who implement AIDS policies and programs. Describes indirect effects of sustainability on the experiences, identities, and aspirations of Malawians—effects that are much broader and deeper than the direct impacts of funding.

Categories: Bibliography, Aid Industry
Author: Swidler, Ann and Susan Cotts Watkins
Published Date: July, 2009