During 2008 and 2009 I had the opportunity to explore issues in development with Masters students at the Institute of Development Studies at Sussex University, Brighton in workshops using participatory theater.  Issues explored were around challenges encountered in development work and research.Through a variety of exercises  students explored how ‘poverty’ and ‘wealth’ were portrayed in society and how they percieved it themselves. Using improvisation they explored challenges they encountered in their work and through audience participation tried to find solutions to their challenges. Issues that before were perhaps mostly theorized become personalized and real.

I also ran a workshop with students in the Participation Power and Social Change Programme exploring issues around their Action Research. We looked at issues of how ‘the other’ is perceived in the research and explored difficult situations they had encountered and how these could be transformed in order to be more participatory.

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