Fostering Better Communication and Participation in Projects
In 2012, an Asian Development Bank (ADB) study in support of its Public Communications Policy (PCP) found that 55% of the concerns raised by civil society in 76 of its projects were related to inadequate communication and participation. In addition, the study found that although most of the projects have general communication and participation objectives, they can still be improved to better address the interests and enhance the engagement of stakeholders, including civil society.
This brief discusses how to foster better communication and participation, zeroing in on an enhanced stakeholder analysis and an effective project communication strategy, which should both be done right from the start of project implementation. These two processes can help in designing effective communication and participation plans that will encourage stakeholders to trust and engage in ADB-assisted projects.
Aside from these two processes, this publication also outlines several steps that projects can undertake to further improve communication and participation. These include integrating routine monitoring of concerns into systems, adjusting project administration manuals to include stakeholder analysis and communication and participation plans, developing a template for these plans, and issuing toolkits for engagement with stakeholders, among others. These steps are all in line with ADB’s PCP, which recognizes the right of stakeholders, including civil society, to seek, access, and impart information about ADB's operations.