Empowerment and participation for people-led change processes

MISEREOR firmly believes that changes cannot be dictated externally. The following documents discuss different ways of supporting marginalised people with shaping their change processes in a self-determined manner..

Strengthening people-driven change processes in Asia


The following documents discuss different ways of supporting marginalised people with shaping their change processes in a self-determined manner. This document is the outcome of the ongoing learning process around ‘people-led development’ of MISEREOR, selected partner organisations and their partner communities in Asia. It looks more closely at the roles and responsibilities MISEREOR, the partner organisations and marginalised communities could play in transformation processes, and the ‘how’ of project-related, yet self-determined, change processes with people at the centre. It critically reflects on ‘project business’ and the crucial roles of change facilitators and their organisations that endeavour to ideally respond to the needs of donors without compromising the participatory and empowering potential of such processes.

Reading the electronic version of the text provides the reader with additional short texts examples, explanations and comments that are not included in the printable version.


For readers who are in a hurry or particularly interested in certain aspects, we also provide the document in three separate sections:

Your comments, sharing and deeper reflections are most welcome and can be linked to the document. Please contact [email protected]

Participation in the Work of MISEREOR

Discussion Paper

MISEREOR has always seen participation of the poor, their access to public services, economic resources and political decision-making processes, as an indispensable element of poverty alleviation. Participation is at the same time a goal, a principle and an instrument of development cooperation designed to sustainably improve the living conditions and the dignity of the poor. This comprehensive understanding of participation is rooted in the call for social justice and the preferential option for the poor, which are guiding principles of Christian social ethics...


Supporting the autonomy of poor target groups

Information Document

At MISEREOR we promote projects that support poor and disadvantaged people in Africa, Asia and Latin America in becoming autonomous. In this context we need to ask how we and how you – our partner organisation – define the “autonomy of poor target group”. How is this strengthening of autonomy reflected in the projects?
We would like to use this information document to dialogue with you, so that we can compare notes and exchange ideas on the autonomy of poor target groups.


Strengthening People-led Development


A joint effort of local communities, NGOs and donors to redefine participation. The publication documents field experiences made by MISEREOR partners in Asia in strengthening people-led development processes. MISEREOR has initiated reflection processes with partner organisations and their partner communities on how to facilitate ‘real’ participation and ownership by local communities of development initiatives. Open communication, peer learning and creating spaces for experiential learning are important elements of such development processes.


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