Strengthening agricultural resilience in Western Province: Developing methods for strengths-based livelihoods approach

Women from Daru Island, in the South Fly District of Western Province, selling their goods at the Town market.
Project code
AUD 315,901
Research program manager
Prof Ann Fleming
Project leader
Associate Prof. Katharine McKinnon, University of Canberra
SEP 2021
JUN 2023
Project status
Legally committed/Active
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This project aims to identify locally appropriate livelihood development practices for the agricultural development sector working across the diverse regions of Western Province in PNG (SFRP, church-based groups, rangers, NGOs, local government officers and others).

The study aims to identify suitable tools and methods for participatory livelihood development activities that are tailored to the different geographic, ecological and social contexts across Western Province (including economic and livelihood contexts identified in the complementary work in FIS/2021/122). The study will consist of a broad review of the social, cultural, environmental and economic characteristics of diverse groups across the Western Province so that suitable development approaches can be recommended. In this way future interventions can be better co-designed with women, men and youth living in rural communities, and create better alignment between formalised market systems and traditional social systems and associated livelihood strategies.

The project will support the aid sector to better tailor development programs with appropriate place-based, strength-based, gender sensitive approaches. The tools and methods identified in the study are important resources (‘tools of the trade’) to support practitioners improve their practice.

The research consists of one integrated project broken down into two small research projects (FIS/2021/122 and FIS/2021/113).

Project outcomes

  • Reviewing what is known about existing and past development practices in Western Province, and assess the extent to which they deployed a place-based, strengths-oriented, gender sensitive approach to agricultural livelihoods development across Western Province.
  • Identifying approaches for accessing Indigenous and place-based knowledge & practices to inform agricultural livelihoods development across the region.
  • Developing a range of methods and tools to support strengths-based, place-based and gender sensitive community led agricultural development in Western Province.
  • Building capacity of local partners and community members in strengths-based development practice.
Key partners
Western Sydney University