Ashram Village: An Analysis of Resource Flows

This study is the second of BRAC’s village micro-studies undertaken in the process of training a group of BRAC staff in the essentials of observational research. This kind of research was initiated with a view to gaining a systematic understanding of the social system that operates in the rural areas of Bangladesh and that underpins the resource structure of the village. It was felt that a deep-rooted strategy for the development of the rural sector of Bangladesh could be effectively evolved only if we had a sound grasp of the nature of the traditional institutions. To this end, BRAC decided to gain insights that could be developed, analyzed and documented through detailed studies of the resource distribution within particular villages. The study was a descriptive analysis of all the resources that are exploited in the village and of the distribution of these resources amongst different sectors of the community. It tried to identify the norms and institutions together with the objective conditions that channel resources in certain directions. In doing so, the study inevitably uncovered elements of the power structure within the village and the data revealed how this power structure co-relates with the flow of resources. The conclusion of this report drew attention to two aspects that emerged from the study. Firstly, the fact that resource management may be seen in terms of a set of strategies and, secondly, the inter-relationship between what is ordinarily considered to be economic behaviour and that side of relationships which are termed as social.

Author: RED, BRAC
Type: Monograph
Year: 1980