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Sex in the Village:
Culture, Religion and HIV/AIDS
in Thailand

This book provides insights into the nature of sex in
the villages of Thailand. It also probes whether social determinants, including culture and religion, help or
hinder local residents in their own attempts to curb the spread of AIDS. The author analyzes the worldviews,
and narrates exclusive life stories of Buddhist and Christian religious leaders and villagers on HIV prevention from two communities. This is followed by an analysis of the Buddhist and Christian HIV/AIDS prevention perspectives. The book concludes with an assessment of the effectiveness of religious interventions in HIV/AIDS prevention, and research findings on sex education undertaken in Thailand.

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Prof Jan Servaes, CfDSC Series Editor presenting former Thai Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva with a set of Southbound monographs at the opening ceremony of the International Conference on the Future Imperatives of Communication and Information for Development and Social Change held in Bangkok from 20 to 21 December 2010.
Communication for Development and Social Change Series

Series Editor: Prof Jan Servaes

Communication for Development and Social Change (CfDSC) is the nurturing of knowledge aimed at creating a consensus for action that takes into account the interests, needs and capacities of all concerned. It is thus a social process. Media are important tools in achieving this process but their use is not an end in itself. Interpersonal communication must also play a fundamental role.

Communication for Development and Social Change has been interpreted and applied in different ways throughout the past century. This has led to diverging perspectives at both the theoretical and research levels, as well as in policy-making and implementation. The relationship between the application of communication processes and technologies, and the achievement of measurable development outcomes is an emerging subject of research, discussion and conjecture.
Media professionals, opinion-shapers and development assistance policy-makers have sought to use communication systems for social mobilization and change, however, a lack of understanding of the complexities interacting between behavioural, societal and cultural factors within communities has more often led to ineffective, or even counterproductive, outcomes.

Experienced practitioners and scholars point to the need for a close study of society and culture in formulating communication strategies. This is particularly urgent among developing countries where a lack of resources, compounded by unfavourable environmental conditions, has rendered the sharing of information difficult and the reaching of consensus problematic.

Professionals have often laboured under a misunderstanding, commonly held by policy-makers, that confuses Communication for Development and Social Change with public relations, public information, corporate communications and other media-centred activities. However, while communication for development may incorporate skill-sets from those areas of information dissemination, the outcomes it aims to trigger must reach deeper into communication processes and catalyse community dynamics that motivate people to address development issues in a meaningful way.

The books published in this series include the following:


People's Radio:
Communicating change across Africa

This book is a critique of communication for development that examines radio-based methods and practices employed to engage people in the process of social change.

Community engagement is a participatory and deliberative process aimed at fostering good governance, improved livelihoods, safer communities and a sustainable environment. The author discusses the challenges of using radio as a tool for community engagement in development. It examines specific case studies from the African continent. The book also considers the different ways governments, organizations, broadcasters and communities can use radio networks as instruments of participatory knowledge production, exchange and utilization so as to bring about change and development.

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Where The Rivers Meet The Sky:
A Collaborative Approach to Participatory Development

The SKYRIVER process has received a great deal of recognition for its innovative use of video and film tools to enhance and strengthen citizen participation in the decision-making processes of government. The

collaborative process of economic and social development, facilitated within and among Native Alaskan villages, led to direct communication between the villages and government officials and, ultimately, to positive social change. This book provides a detailed review of how the SKYRIVER process evolved and the many lessons learnt from its evolution.

"Tim (Kennedy) was respectful to the people he came to help. He learned to listen rather than lecturing to the people he came to serve. He became in spirit an Alaska Native. He demonstrated through his work a statement made by Father Oleksa, Russian Orthodox priest, who said, “we need the wisdom of the old and the knowledge of the new.” Tim was respectful of the wisdom of the ancestors and taught the Alaska Native people to navigate through the external decision process (State of Alaska legislative process) of making change through the use of modern film and video technology. The making of the film statement was a process much like the old way of reaching a consensus, to discuss the issue for as long as it takes for everyone to agree. Everyone had a voice. He taught us the knowledge of the new by the use of filmmaking to carry the message to the decision makers and to get a response from the receiver to play back to the senders of the message. Much like the Yup’ik story tellers using the story knife, a picture is worth a thousand words."

Kanaqlak (George P. Charles), Yup'ik PhD
Center Director, National Resource Center for American Indian, Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian Elders University of Alaska, Anchorage

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Understanding Micronesia:
A Cultural Guide for Researchers and Visitors

"Tom Hogan's Understanding Micronesia is a welcome addition to the growing body of works on communication in the Pacific. Based on many years of productive fieldwork, this book is theoretically sophisticated and rich in insights. The author has lucidly and cogently laid bare some of the very significant issues that impede cross-cultural understanding in this region. I strongly recommend this

book to all those interested in culture and communication in Micronesia and beyond."

Wimal Dissanayake , University of Hawaii

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  Moving Targets

Moving Targets: Mapping the Paths between Communication, Technology and Social Change
in Communities

Communicators are shifting their focus of attention towards local communities and with the model of communication becoming multidimensional. This shift confronts both scholars and practitioners with a series of questions:

How do we empower the ‘voiceless’ to control both the process and the content of communication?
How do we inform, initiate and encourage the grassroots to identify problems and to come up with solutions?
How do we deal with people’s identity issues as they experience social and behavioural change?

These questions raise timely and serious issues related to communication for development and social change. This book attempts to address those issues, particularly at the community level, by investigating why some community initiatives succeed while others fail. Lessons learned from the past and present will help scholars and practitioners to better position themselves and better utilize their resources to bring about desired outcomes in the future.

This book, comprising 13 chapters contributed by both academics and practitioners specializing in the field of communication for development and social change in communities, has just been published to launch the CfDSC series. Prof. Jan Servaes is the Series Editor.

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