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close this bookGATE - 2/93 - Appropriate Information Transfer (GTZ GATE, 1993, 56 p.)
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Informal Financial Intermediaries

Hans Dieter Seibel: Self-Help Groups as Financial Intermediaries: A Training Manual for Self-Help Groups, Banks and NGOs.

Cologne Development Studies Vol. 16. Verlag Breitenbach Publishers, Saarbrucken 1992. CD-6600 Saarbrucken, Memeler Str.50 & Fort Lauderdale, Florida 33305, USA, P. O. Box 16243).

In most developing countries there are vast numbers of self-help groups (SHGs) acting as informal financial intermediaries. For millions of small farmers and microentrepreneurs - considered unbankable by formal financial institutions - SHGs are the only agencies with effective financial services at the grassroots level. Churches, foundations and other NGOs have played a prominent role in assisting SHGs.

In recent years deregulation has opened up new: opportunities. Some governmental aid agencies and NGOs have now entered into dialogue and cooperation to create a new framework for the development of SHGs als financial intermediaries: towards informal or semiformal cooperative financial institutions, small banks, or linkages with banks. In all three cases professionalization of SHG staff in financial operations has emerged as an urgent need.

The manual comprises 140 modules, addressed in three major parts at SHG management, bank and NGO staff, and policymakers. The approach to training is participative, with scope for trainers and participants to incorporate their own experience.

Environment Manuals

Bundesministerium fur wirtschaftliche Zusammenarbeit (BMZ): Umwelt-Handbuch. Arbeitsmaterialien zur Erfassung und Bewertung von Umweltwirkungen.

Vieweg, Braunschweig, Germany,1993. 1. Band: 591 S. ISBN: 3-528-02303-1. DM 118,-. 2. Band: 734 S. ISBN: 3-528-02304-X. DM 138,-.3. Band: 743 S. ISBN: 3-52802305-8. DM 138,-. (Verlag Vieweg, Postfach 300944, 51338 Leverkusen 3, Germany).

The three environment manuals are study materials for recording and evaluating environmental impact. The areas dealt with are 1) introduction, multisectoral planning, infrastructure; 2) agronomy, mining/energy, industry/trades; 3) a catalogue of environmentally relevant standards.

Ethnobiological Classification

Brent Berlin: Ethnobiological Classification. Principles of Categorization of Plants and Animals in Traditional Societies.

Princeton University Press, Princeton, New Jersey, USA. 1992. (Princeton University Press, 41 William Street, Princeton, New Jersey 08540, USA). 331 pp. ISBN: 0-691-09469-1. About 70 US$.

The author wants to present evidence in support of a number of widespread regularities concerning the categorization and nomenclature of plants and animals by peoples of traditional, nonliterate societies. His major claim is that the observed structural and substantive typological regularities found among systems of ethnobiological classification of traditional peoples from many different parts of the world can be best explained in term of human beings' similar perceptual and largely unconscious appreciation of the natural affinities among groupings of plants and animals in their environment.

Sustainable Development
Michael Carey, Ian Christie: Managing sustainable development.

Earthscan, London, UK 1992. 303 pp. ISBN: 1-85383-129-8. £ 12,95 (Earthscan Publication Ltd., 120 Petonville Road, London N1 9JN).

The book examines the managerial and organisational dimension of sustainable development. It analyses the challenges posed by environmental problems to political culture and organisational structure in industrial societies, and identifies the roots of ecological problems in our economic and social systems. New approaches are needed, and the authors identify the action-centred networks as a key innovation in environmental management.