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Development, participation and power in rural areas: the land management III project

Grant number: 10/14398-8
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Master
Effective date (Start): March 01, 2011
Effective date (End): February 28, 2013
Field of knowledge:Humanities - Sociology - Rural Sociology
Principal Investigator:Rodrigo Constante Martins
Grantee:Mariana Bombo Perozzi Gameiro
Host Institution: Centro de Educação e Ciências Humanas (CECH). Universidade Federal de São Carlos (UFSCAR). São Carlos , SP, Brazil


Until the 1980's decade, rural development policies used to focus on physical restructuring and increasing yields of the primary sector. However, during that decade, the spotlight shifted to human and cultural capital in the locality, under an approach that tries to develop local actors potential. Nevertheless, studies have shown that sociopolitical structures become increasingly complex when new social groups compete with established interests, in order to dominate rural policies. The participation of groups previously apart from the deciding process requires power redistribution, what leads to tensions and conflicts of interests. Thus, this research project suggests a discussion on the power relations involved in the development of the Land Management III Project, known in Brazil as "Microbacias I". The program is a public policy partially funded by the World Bank and carried out by the Secretary of Agriculture of the State of Sao Paulo, through CATI (Coordenadoria de Assistência Técnica Integral), up to 2008. The program aimed to promote sustainable development in rural areas of Sao Paulo State, with full participation and involvement of the beneficiaries. The study will try to comprehend power relations involved in the Microbacias program, through the interpretation of conflicts between experts and non-experts. These conflicts emerge when we analyze the legitimacy of some speeches regarding rural development, sustainability, participation, among others. In order to achieve these goals, we will use social qualitative research methods, as interviews, documental and bibliographical research. (AU)

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