Research and development

The basic characteristic for PEP International is the Research and Development orientation of the organisation. PEP is constantly developing a measurement system that can follow if intend influence has been achieved.

A baseline study structured mainly as an opinion poll is carried out prior to any direct field activities. The baseline study is carried out through a random selection from three control groups; villages directly targeted by PEP, neighbourhood villages supposed to be effected by the local government involved and external villages totally out of PEP influence.

The baseline study is then follow-up by repeated studies with at least a year interval and maintained the same area focus and included the same questions as previously applied. Due to the nature of the PERA project in Bosnia and Herzegovina, particularly the division of the country, interviews were held with 1.837 persons in 2010 and in 2011 with 1.835 persons. The University of Sarajevo was offered a chance to include a number of its students in conducting the final study in 2011. 16 students from the Faculty of Political Sciences, Faculty of Economics and Faculty of Public Administration participated both in the direct study in villages as well as processing the data from it. Students were very happy for this opportunity and claimed to have gained valuable experience on how to apply study methods through a multidisciplinary approach and also to have gained a better understanding on the situation in rural parts of BiH.

The study orientation of PEP has also inspired students from the University of Iceland and the University of Gothenburg who are currently using the PERA project as a base for their Master studies on; the correlation between the increased social capital in villages and environmental awareness and actions and the role of participation and social capital in democratic development.