Updated December 20, 2012

 
Folklore, Rumors (or Rumours) & Urban Myths
Interfering with Development & Aid/Relief Efforts, & Government Initiatives
(& how these are overcome)

 
There are lots of obstacles that can stand in the way of human, community and institutional development, but there is one that rarely gets discussed: widespread misunderstanding and myth-spreading. Folklore, rumors (or rumours) and urban myths / urban legends often interfere with relief and development activities, and government initiatives -- even bringing such to a grinding halt. They create ongoing misunderstandings among communities and cultures, prevent people from seeking help, encourage people to engage in unhealthy and even dangerous practices, cultivate mistrust of people and institutions, and have even lead to mobs of people attacking someone or others for no reason other than something they heard from a friend of a friend of a friend.

Since 2004, I have been gathering and sharing both examples of this phenomena, and recommendations on preventing folklore, rumors and urban myths from interfering with development and aid/relief efforts and government initiatives.

Please note that I'm not interested in just urban legends but, specifically misinformation that interferes with relief or development efforts or government initiatives. This includes countries with conflict zones, post-conflict countries, under-developed countries, and even donor countries (like the USA). And most especially, I'm interested in ways that such misinformation has been countered successfully. If you have related information or examples, please contact me.

What I'm also wondering: are their any efforts in developing and transitional countries similar to the myth-busting Straight Dope column by Cecil Adams in the USA? Or truthorfiction.com? Or hoax-slayer.com? Or MythBusters? If you know of such, please contact me.

Read and subscribe to Jayne's Blog

If you are interested in updates to this section of my web site, subscribe to my blog. I blog about this subject frequently.  

Back to my development resources main page


  Quick Links 

  • go to my home page
  • my consulting services
  • my workshops & presentations
  • my capacity-building work
  • my credentials & expertise
  • my core professional competencies
  • my volunteering/pro bono experiences
  •   
  • about Jayne Cravens (me)
  • contact me
  • see my schedule
  • linking to or from my web site
  • The Coyote Helps Foundation
  • Jayne's Amazon Wishlist
  •   
  • subscribe to my blog via RSS
  • become my fan on Facebook
  • follow me on Twitter
  • subscribe to Tech4Impact, my email newsletter
  • all of my social networking & online publications

  •                 add me to a GooglePlus circle


    Disclaimer: No guarantee of accuracy or suitability is made by the poster/distributor. This material is provided as is, with no expressed or implied warranty.

    Permission is granted to copy, present and/or distribute a limited amount of material from my web site (up to five pages) without charge if the information is kept intact and without alteration, and is credited to:

    Jayne Cravens & Coyote Communications, www.coyotecommunications.com

    Otherwise, please contact me for permission to reprint, present or distribute these materials (for instance, in a class or book or online event for which you intend to charge).

    The art work and material on this site was created and is copyrighted 1996-2014
    by Jayne Cravens, all rights reserved
    (unless noted otherwise, or its a logo from a company that is not mine).