Stakeholder participation in agricultural research projects: a conceptual framework for reflection and decision-making

This paper, written by Andreas Neef and Dieter Neubert, proposes a new framework for participatory agricultural research. This framework allows researchers to make decisions on which issues and in which phases different elements of participatory agricultural research may be used depending on the context. Therefore. rather than maximising the use of different participatory methods the tool optimises the use of participatory elements in agricultural research. 


"Given the recent diversification of participatory approaches and their creative combination with high-quality agricultural science, the common typologies of participatory approaches—suggesting different degrees of participation along a single scale—may no longer prove adequate for agricultural scientists to reflect on whether and in which phases they want to, can, and should incorporate participatory elements into their research projects. In an effort to address such questions in this paper, we propose a framework for reflection and decision-making with regard to participation in agricultural research projects that takes into account the increasing diversity and multidimensional character of participatory research towards sustainable agriculture, food security, and natural resource management. Following this introduction, we discuss the most recent typologies of participatory agricultural research with respect to their strengths and shortcomings. We then present the participation framework with its different dimensions and attributes and discuss the potential applications of the framework drawing primarily on our experience of applying it in a long-term interdisciplinary research program in Thailand and Vietnam. We conclude the article with some final remarks."


Neef, A. and Neubert, D. (2011). Stakeholder participation in agricultural research projects: a conceptual framework for reflection and decision-making, Agriculture and Human Values, Vol 28, Issue 2, pp 179-194. Retrieved from: