, Volume 18, Issue 2, pp 315-338
Date: 02 Jul 2011

Use of the Labour-Intensive Method in the Repair of a Rural Road Serving an Indigenous Community in Jocotán (Guatemala)

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Abstract

This paper reports the results obtained in an aid project designed to improve transport in the municipal area of Jocotán (Guatemala). The rural road network of an area occupied by indigenous people was analysed and a road chosen for repair using the labour-intensive method–something never done before in this area. The manpower required for the project was provided by the population that would benefit from the project; the involvement of outside contractors and businesses was avoided. All payment for labour went into the pockets of the local people. The small earth movements made and the use of local materials guaranteed the project’s environmental sustainability, while the on-site training of the local community prepared its members for the continued maintenance of the road, thus investing the project with social sustainability.