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Publication Detail
AER 2007-01: Economic Development of Indigenous Communities

It is important that development organizations do not neglect the socio-economic realities of their target populations. Socio-economics here acts as a measure of bounded culture, that is, the range of options available to a particular individual or organization relative to any given circumstances. It limits and guides activities not only externally to the individual, but also commands their internal thought processes to arrive at certain conclusions. This culture establishes informal regimes, or a series of rules and expectations, of socio-economic relations that form the landscape in which an individual resides. However, international donor organizations, being foreign to these bounded cultures, and having a logic that does not necessarily coincide with local regimes, often fails to recognize their fabric of interwoven relations and impose their own logic which often entails a significant alteration of the socio-economic environment Failure to take this into consideration impacts adversely on successful project implementation. However, the issue is not to foster programs that are sensitive to a homogenous conceptualization of culture but rather to establish linkages to a wider economic audience and to provide the means for actors (like indigenous groups) to approach these processes on their own terms, to grant equal access without regard to ethnicity. For instance, indigenous groups can be provided, aside from the inputs for certain economic enterprises, information about external markers and transportation infrastructure to facilitate access to the same. Social units like indigenous groups will establish their own logic for economic interactions that results from such access, which carries the consent of the actors involved.

Action for Economic Reforms
Authors Keywords
Hoyer, Robert; indigenous community; official development assistance (ODA); indigenous groups;
Download PDF Number of Downloads
Published in 2007 and available in the AER website or Downloaded 486 times since November 25, 2011
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