Most early approaches to encouraging social development focused on economic and technical issues. This volume begins from the premise that economic and technical patterns are embedded in cultural patterns. These patterns of custom and belief are sometimes elaborate, and they can act as barriers to technical or economic change. This volume presents case studies of social change, developing a model for analysis and action. An analytic guide is presented for each case history, and the editor points out factors that influenced the outcome of the project. The volume áis designed for people in the field, and is intended to be of practical usefulness.
From hundreds of case histories, Arthur H. Niehoff selected nineteen that most clearly exemplify the technique of the innovator, the motivations of potential recipients and the reactions of these recipients due to local cultural patterns and values. These case histories of efforts at innovation in Latin America, Africa, the Middle East and Asia illustrate the specific problems facing American change agents abroad and define the basic ingredients of socio-economic change. Covering the types of problems innovators most frequently encounter in developing nations, Niehoff's compendium of successful and unsuccessful attempts at change demonstrates concretely the theoretical principles set forth.
Prospective change agents gain fruitful insights into many problems by studying the practical examples of the programs of change agents in a wide variety of situations. Each of the case-histories is analyzed in the context of a socio-cultural concept of change, emphasizing the principles and factors of change. This book presents essential guidelines for perceiving and dealing with the cultural aspects of a change situation for all students of applied anthropology and social change.