Mobilizing Assets for Community Development: The Case of Comite ProMejoras in Ayampe, Ecuador

Adriana Romero

Student thesis: Master thesis

Abstract

Over decades, top-down development approaches have failed to deliver real and sustainable development outcomes for the people in rural settings of developing countries. As a result, this has provided an impetus for exploring alternative development approaches. People-centered development offers opportunities for research, due to the high participation of rural residents in development efforts. Therefore, the asset-based community development (ABCD) approach is said to offer not only a ‘people-centered’ but also a ‘citizen-driven’ approach. Based on an in-depth qualitative case study of a single Ecuadorian community-based organization, this thesis sets out to answer how Comite Pro-Mejoras de Ayampe (CPMA), mobilizes assets to promote locally driven development in Ayampe. Using a positivist approach, the research question is answered based on data collected during fieldwork in the coastal, rural areas of Ayampe, Ecuador. Using a conceptual framework (developed for this thesis), based on community development literature, an assessment of the extent to which CPMA in Ecuador achieves asset mobilization was made through three ABCD principles: 1) Asset-driven; 2) Relationship-driven; and 3) Internal focus. Findings reveal that although CPMA has worked on mobilizing assets, including all the seven community capitals outlined in the ABCD literature, in practice there are both internal and external factors that hinder CPMA from achieving greater community development efforts. Nonetheless, inside out development outcomes were successfully achieved by enhancing existing capitals.

EducationsMSc in Business, Language and Culture, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
LanguageEnglish
Publication date2015
Number of pages97