JIP Report

Joint Initiatives Program was terminated in March 2009

The Joint Initiatives Program (JIP) provides awards to teams of individuals comprised of at least two graduated Sylff fellows to confront contemporary issues of social relevance approached from regional or transnational and trans-disciplinary perspectives. It is an opportunity for the Sylff community to collaborate with each other and contribute to society.

There are two categories of projects.

1. Social Research

Social research refers to academic research, the results of which are intended to be published in peer-reviewed academic and/or professional journals or publications.

Downside of the Human Rights-Based Approach to Disability in Development (2008)

This project is designed to examine the operationalisation of development cooperation in health and disability through perspectives of the Southern stakeholders and context. The project was launched in 2006 to conduct a study on health and disability in international development policy and its implementation. This year, the project team will apply the human rights-based approach as an analytical tool throughout the research with a special focus on the principle of self-determination of aid recipients. The project members will conduct two case studies: 1. Operationalisation of human rights-based approach to disability in development cooperation activities in Uganda from the perspective of Ugandan disabled women, and 2. Ethical considerations in resource and program prioritization in donor health interventions in Kenya and Ethiopia. Together with the results of their first-year project, the team will contribute to the dialogue of social understanding of participation, policy-making and implementation analysis, and processes that comprise current international aid efforts for poverty alleviation.

Project Team Members
Hisayo Katsui (University of Helsinki)
Richard Wamai (University of Helsinki)

Mainstreaming Disability Issues in Japanese and Finnish Development Policies and Practices (2006)

This is a process study on health and disability in international development policy and its implementation. The case studies are on the relationship between non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and governments in mainstreaming disability issues in Japanese and Finnish development policies. Also, the mainstreaming of health issues in the UK and Japanese development policies on the ground in Ethiopia and Kenya with a special focus on NGO implementation. The project analyzes how policies of international development cooperation from three countries (Finland, Japan and the UK) are formed and translated into implementation in two developing countries (Ethiopia and Kenya). The main methodology is documentary policy and literature reviews, evaluation and consultations with key informants in the field, namely governmental and NGO actors.

Project Team Members
Hisayo Katsui (University of Helsinki)
Richard Wamai (University of Helsinki)

Resource Management in Protected Areas and its Impact on Human Development: A Comparative Sustainable Development Study of the Mau Narok Forest Reserve (Kenya) and the Serra da Estrale National Park (Portugal) (2006)

The project team studied whether protected areas contribute to the well-being of local communities and population in terms of sustainable development. On the other hand, protected areas may induce counter-productive effects, such as ecological migrations, that is, populations directly or non-directly forced to move out their own homelands by environmental authorities or conditions. This project is a theoretical and empirical research project, and includes comparative case studies of two protected areas in Kenya and Portugal. The project team analyzes both individualities and universalities of the two protected areas on two different continents.

Project Team Members
Joao Luis Jesus Fernandes (University of Coimbra)
Nicholas Kariuki Githuku (University of Nairobi)

Crisis Communication and Cultural Constructions of Calamities: Preparedness in Guyana, Thailand and the United States (2006)

This research provides an international comparison of personal and communal crisis preparation and communication. The study investigates the impact of the December 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami on southwestern Thailand, the January 2005 flooding of communities in Guyana, and the August and September 2005 hurricanes and flooding in the area of New Orleans, USA. Through in-depth interviews and focus groups with individuals, community organizations, and non-governmental organizations (NGOs), this research gives voice to many whose disaster stories would not be heard otherwise and reminds of the importance of crisis contingency planning and disaster preparation. Suggestions for personal and communal disaster preparation and a list of online preparedness resources are provided.

Project Team Members
Andrew Jared Critchfield
Donna Allen Oti
Wei Sun
Deborah Clark Vance
Heather Harris Carter
(All are from Howard University)

2. Social Action

Social action projects relate to community-based activities, outreach activities, workshops and other activities that are intended to further the humanitarian goals of the Sylff Program.

Environmental Awareness on Waste Management: A Pilot Project at Manggarai District, Jakarta - Indonesia (2006)

This project provides education on environmental awareness to the people of Manggarai Sub-district. The Manggarai is populated by 3200 people and faces a problem that people dump their waste into the river due to the lack of government’s waste disposable services. The project team provides trainings and workshops on waste disposal to the targeted people, and discusses with them how they can solve this problem. Through the project, it is expected that the people of the Manggarai learn to understand techniques of waste disposable management, reduce waste disposal and better cooperate with other stakeholders.

Project Team Members
Sarojini Imran
Yeni Salma
Citra Wardhani
Budi Setiwan Nazim
Siti Fatimah
(All are from University of Indonesia)

Entrepreneurship Curriculum (2006)

This is an action-research project which aims to integrate entrepreneurship education into the educational framework of high-school students in developing economies. The first phase was mainly research on the theme. The final outcome of the project is an instructional material for educators. The designed curriculum teaches business skills such as accounting, inventory management, logistics, marketing and sales in a manner that is easily understandable to high school students and which they can carry forward to set up new ventures of their own if they desire. The other important focus of the project is to inculcate entrepreneurial traits among high school students to develop the art of critical thinking. The second phase of the project designed the instructional material in conjunction with members of the school team/organization. The designed curriculum is delivered in the form of a toolkit and has two components:(1)a teacher guide and (2)a student work book.

Project Team Members
Jeff Kee
Parathima Rodrigues
Sudarsana Kundu
Jean Louis Racine
(All are from Columbia University)

Entrepreneurship Curriculum (2008) "Skills for Kids"

A Youth Initiative that Develops an Early Entrepreneurial Mindset in Children

The main objective of this social action project is to develop and pilot an innovative and adaptable two to three day entrepreneurial workshop curriculum which teaches students, between the ages of 7 and 14, practical life skills and traits associated with entrepreneurship. The team develops an activity-based curriculum on developing entrepreneurial skills and adapt this basic curriculum to the local context, and pilot it as a workshop in cities in Mongolia (August 9, 2008) and in India (January, 2009). By teaching the young children these skills and traits, the team aims to increase their potential to succeed in ventures including, but not limited to, small and medium scale enterprises and equip them with a diverse set of competencies that they can use in any professional or personal setting.

The Skills for Kids Team
Prathima Rodrigues (Columbia University: Technology Policy Analyst, The World Bank)
Badamjav Batsukh (Academy of Mongolia: Officer, Ministry of Education, Culture and Science, Mongolia)
Sunil Mathew (Senior Software Engineer, OPNET Technologies)
Sapruddin Perwira (Deputy Project Director, Project Hope, Indonesia).
Here is a report on the workshop in Mongolia, on August 9, 2008.

For more information on “Skills For Kids”, contact or visit

Institutionalization of Sustainable Waste Management: An Extention Program of Environmental Awareness in Jakarta and West Java (2007)

This project is designed to provide education of environmental awareness to the people of Manggarai Sub-district, Jakarta, Indonesia. The project was launched in 2006 to facilitate a way to reach agreement among all stakeholders and action implementations regarding waste management. This year the project team focuses on direct approaches to all of the stakeholders by organizing three workshops. Public participation is expected to increase through information provision and promotion via the website and mass-media. This strategy is expected to generate a snow-ball effect for the program. The team continues working with the community to achieve a higher recycling rate, higher income, better jobs, higher environmental awareness and sustainability by the new waste management system. The team also aims to generate awareness of sustainable waste management that takes into account the characteristics of Indonesian people and the community.

Project Team Members
Sarojini Imran
Citra Wardhani
Siti Fatimah
Budi Setiwan
Yeni Barlinti
(All are from University of Indonesia)
Andri Rosadi (Gadjah Mada University)

Community Energy Initiatives (2007)

Energy resources are increasingly scarce in Tanzania. This project addresses human problems that stem from that scarcity, which affect rural women and their families and intends to provide energy options to people. The project team built a “Community Energy Resource Center” in Sombetini, (Tanzania) which consists of a central building where women, girls and families gather in a communal setting to learn about energy-sustaining technologies. The project team uses various methodologies, including several different approaches, consisting of disseminating information, public demonstrations, group discussions, and workshops and training for local people and these approaches led to participatory involvement and capacity building.

Project Team Members
Stuart Graham (UC Berkeley)
Stephen Mutinda Mutiso (University of Nairobi)
Maria Divona Adelasia (Universidad de Deusto)
Claudia Radel A. (Princeton University)
Garrick Blalock (Cornell University)
Anna Oursler Lauren (UC Berkeley)