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The Social Shaping of Participatory Spaces: Evidence from Community Development in Southern Thailand


  • Mikkel Funder


Critical analysis of participatory community development has claimed that such approaches serve as a vehicle for social control and co-option by external actors. Drawing on a case study from Southern Thailand, this article argues that we need to take a less deterministic perspective, and pay more attention to the ways in which community members themselves manipulate or subvert participatory processes. The article shows how this may result in hybrid participatory practices and institutions that contain elements of both local and external interests, and which play a key role in defining the way power is constituted in local participatory spaces.

Suggested Citation

  • Mikkel Funder, 2010. "The Social Shaping of Participatory Spaces: Evidence from Community Development in Southern Thailand," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 46(10), pages 1708-1728.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:jdevst:v:46:y:2010:i:10:p:1708-1728
    DOI: 10.1080/00220388.2010.492858

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    1. Catherine Ragasa & Thaddee Badibanga & John Ulimwengu, 2016. "Effectiveness and challenges of participatory governance: the case of agricultural and rural management councils in the Western Democratic Republic of the Congo," Food Security: The Science, Sociology and Economics of Food Production and Access to Food, Springer;The International Society for Plant Pathology, vol. 8(4), pages 827-854, August.

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