Institutional Ethnographies of Global Development: Knowledge, Experience and Ruling Relations

Monday, 16 July 2018: 10:30-12:20
TG06 Institutional Ethnography (host committee)

Language: English

In the contemporary world, aid to less-developed countries has become increasingly organized and coordinated through high-profile, often science-based, programs whose ruling relations cross institutional, national and professional boundaries. Institutional ethnography proposes that programs of improvement in areas as diverse as  healthcare, education, women’s rights, humanitarian relief, and agriculture and food production are constituted through textual technologies that make agenda-setting, management decision-making and accountability for desired results a matter of calculation based on the application and use of standardized metrics.  Texts such as international declarations, global assessment systems and universal indicators introduce ruling ideas (and associated best practices) into local contexts.  While local experiences of participation are mixed, virtually unassailable accounts of the planned outcomes of these kinds of institutionally programmed activity are integral to the technology. Institutional ethnographies explicating these knowledge-based processes as ruling practices would be welcome contributions to this session, as well as papers that chronicle the troubles experienced in the process of such programs being activated in the lives of people in local settings. Together, the session’s papers are expected to extend understandings of what happens within these well-intended knowledge circuits and to begin to identify the empirical grounds from which social activists might contest their power and authority.
Session Organizers:
Marie CAMPBELL, University of Victoria, Canada and Ann Christin NILSEN, University of Agder, Norway
Marie CAMPBELL, University of Victoria, Canada and Ann Christin NILSEN, University of Agder, Norway
Oral Presentations
Whose Knowledge Support Development Programs?
Yukimi SHIMODA, University of Tsukuba, Japan
Community Based Water Management in Rural Chile
Adriana SUAREZ DELUCCHI, University of Bristol, United Kingdom