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Robert Chambers

Research Associate

Professor Robert Chambers has a background in biology, history and public administration.

His current concerns and interests include professionalism, power, the personal dimension in development, participatory methodologies, epistemology, poverty,  stunting, teaching and learning with large numbers, and work on sanitation and hygiene with the Sanitation Learning Hub.

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The Sanitation Learning Hub

Together with partners around the world, our focus is to support and strengthen the sector to tackle the complex challenges it faces in delivering the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 6.2.



Universal justice: a provocation

We (Tessa and Robert) are working on a book of forewords Robert has written for other books.  We think collecting the writing together In this way will draw attention to their importance and be valuable to others.  We were brainstorming about the final section which is still to be...

19 October 2020



Rapid Action Learning for Sanitation and Hygiene Programming

Frontiers of Sanitation: Innovations and Insights 15

This issue of Frontiers of Sanitation describes four Rapid Action Learning approaches that have been developed and tested in India by IDS and partners to support the Swachh Bharat Mission – Gramin, and encourages others to use them, to innovate other approaches, and to share their...

Jamie Myers
Jamie Myers & 2 others

21 September 2020


Whose Voice? Participatory Research and Policy Change

The increasing use of PRA and related participatory approaches by NGOs, governments and multinational agencies has opened up new ways in which policy can be influenced by those who are poor, weak, marginalised and excluded. Based on the premise that sustainable policies require local voices to...

10 August 2018

Working Paper

Rural Appraisal: Rapid, Relaxed and Participatory

The term Participatory Rural Appraisal (PRA) describes a growing family of approaches and methods to enable local people to share, enhance and analyse their knowledge of life and conditions, to plan and to act. PRA flows from and owes much to activist participatory research, agroecosystems,...

10 August 2018

Working Paper

Mainstreaming participation in development

Despite the potential benefits of globalization and technological change, world poverty has increased and growth prospects have dimmed for developing countries during the 1980s and 90s. The Comprehensive Development Framework (CDF) was launched by the World Bank in January 1999 in response to...

10 August 2018

Robert Chambers’s recent work