Building skills in qualitative research to inform pro-poor policy: experience from a Bangladeshi NGO

This paper describes the research methodology followed in the ‘Livelihoods of the Extreme Poor Project’, a collaborative research project in Bangladesh between PROSHIKA (a large national NGO) and DFID (the UK government department for international development). The dual purpose of this project was to learn about poor people’s livelihoods and train the PROSHIKA research team in the use of qualitative research methods. The research findings were to be fed directly into policy formulation and the planning of new development interventions for the poorest people in Bangladesh. The paper provides an assessment of what the approach used achieved both in terms of building staff capacity and in policy influence, concluding that it has been largely successful in achieving its purpose.