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PROBLEM ANALYSIS what is it and why do we use it?.

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Presentation on theme: "PROBLEM ANALYSIS what is it and why do we use it?."— Presentation transcript:

1 PROBLEM ANALYSIS what is it and why do we use it?

2 Why problem analysis? Helps determine real as opposed to apparent development needs Helps to bond programme participants together (identify issues, roles of deferent partners in resolving the issues, timescale and resources needed to achieve a given solution/objective). Builds better understanding of underlying causes of development issues Builds stakeholder consensus Identifies potential constraints Identifies real cause of the problem Helps establishment of meaningful relationship with other implementers Helps establish the actual size of the problem and likely resources needed Helps establish FAO’s comparative advantage

3 oPA can be undertaken at any stage of the activity cycle, but most useful at the stage of IDENTIFICATION and DESIGN oThe three main techniques used for PA are:  Problem tree analysis workshop with key stakeholders*  Focus group interviews with key stakeholders*  Participatory Rural Appraisal *(the first two techniques are complementary and ideally should be used together) When and how it should be used?

4 Problem and Situation Analysis STEPS  Step 1: Formulate problems  Step 2: Develop the problem tree  Step 3: Developing the Objectives Tree  Step 4: Alternative Analysis  Step 5: Selecting the Activity Strategy

5 Problem and Situation Analysis STEPS Step 1: Formulate problems A.Stakeholders brainstorm suggestions to identify a focal problem, that is, to describe what they consider to be the central point of the overall problem. B.Each identified problem is written down on a separate card or Post-It.

6 Step 1: Formulate problems  What is a problem? A problem is not the absence of a solution but an existing negative state: 'Crops are infested with pests' is a problem; 'No pesticides are available' is not.  What is a ‘focal problem’? One that involves the interests and problems of the stakeholders present.

7 Step 1: Formulate problems If agreement cannot be reached, then: arrange the proposed problems in a problem tree according to the causal relationships between them; try again to agree on the focal problem on the basis of the overview achieved in this way. If no consensus can be achieved: try further brainstorming; select the best decision, e.g. by awarding points; or decide temporarily on one, continue your work but return at a later stage to discuss the other options.

8 Step 2: Develop the problem tree A.Identify immediate and direct causes of the focal problem. B.Identify immediate and direct effects of the focal problem. C.Construct a problem tree showing the cause and effect relationships between the problems. D.Review the problem tree, verify its validity and completeness and make any necessary adjustments.

9 Structure of the problem tree showing causes and effects

10 Problem tree analysis Define the focal problem, its immediate and direct causes and its effects Example taken from Philippines NMTPF CUASES FOCAL PROBLEM EFFECTS

11 A.Reformulate all the elements in the problem tree into positive desirable conditions. B.Review the resulting means-ends relationships to assure the validity and completeness of the objective tree. C.If required: Revise statements; Delete objectives that appear unrealistic or unnecessary; Add new objectives where required. D.Draw connecting lines to indicate the means-ends relationships. Step 3: Developing the Objectives Tree

12 Objectives tree analysis Transform each problem statement into an objective Source: DFID

13 Step 4: Alternative Analysis A.Identify differing 'means-ends' ladders, as possible alternative options or activity components. B.Eliminate objectives that are obviously not desirable or achievable. C.Eliminate objectives being pursued by other development activities in the area. D.Discuss the implications for affected groups

14 Alternatives analysis Using objective criteria, analyse which objectives should be central to the activity design. Source: DFID

15 Step 5: Selecting the Activity Strategy A.Make an assessment of the feasibility of the different alternatives. B. Select one of the alternatives as the activity strategy. C. If agreement cannot be reached, then: introduce additional criteria; alter the most promising option by including or subtracting elements from the objectives tree.

16 Focus group interviews with key stakeholders  In Problem and Situation Analysis, focus groups are used to: (a) understand user needs and requirements, or (b) reactions to new or proposed product or service ideas.  During Implementation, focus groups can be used to ensure that activities are on track and performing to user standards.  At the time of Completion, focus groups can be used to determine to what extent an activity has accomplished its objectives and to identify lessons learned for improving future activities.

17 Conducting a focus group (guide)... 1.Think about the purpose of the FG and the information you need very carefully. Do you really need the information? How will the information be used? How much is worth knowing? 2.Develop a basic set of open-ended questions. They should be sequenced so that more mundane and general questions are at the front-end. There should be a logical flow to the questions that is clear to the respondents. Pilot test the questions to make sure they are clear. Memorise the questioning route so that you don't have to refer to it during your interview. This will keep the discussion flowing more smoothly. 3.Invite participants to your session well in advance and get firm commitments to attend. Contact people to remind them the day of the event.

18 Conducting a focus group (guide)... 4.Set up your working area and organise either a table or circle of chairs so that people can sit comfortably facing each other. 5.When people begin to arrive for the event welcome them and make them feel comfortable. When everyone has arrived, sit down and get started. 6.Open the session with thanks, a description of the purpose of the interview, any assurances about confidentiality, and an overview of the discussion topics. 7.The moderator should work through his/her questions, seeking a balanced input from all participants. Watching the time and knowing your bottom line questions, will mean that when time runs out, you have your most important information. You may need to probe for more details on important points, 'Could you tell me more about that?'

19 Conducting a focus group (guide) 8.Analyse your findings. This is the key step and it should take place right after the interview while things are still fresh. Plan to spend at least an hour with the co-moderator to discuss and analyse your findings. Now is the time to make detailed notes. Use this time as an opportunity to review and critique your questions and moderator skills. 9.Decide if you need to run additional focus groups to round out or deepen your analysis.

20 the end The material taken from: DFID ODI FAO by Branka Buric


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