Research Proposal: Afghan Proposal Foreign Aid

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[. . .] Proposed Research Methods

The proposed research will consist of a qualitative study using multiple specific research methodologies including simple observation, interview, a review of media sources and other primary documents related to the research questions, and other reasonable modes of inquiry as they present themselves during the research period. With an estimated timeframe of two years within which to gather and analyze data, and at least twelve months spent in the country of Afghanistan in direct data collection, it is expected that an abundance of data in a variety of different related areas and from a variety of modes can be obtained.

Because of the variety of specific research methodologies available, the best method will be selected for each individual step in the research on the ground by the researcher, though there would of course be a great deal of planning ahead of time. Flexibility that allows the researcher to select the best possible method for determining where aid is going and what the relevant level of corruption is, however, will be essential to carrying out this research. There will be a great deal of political and cultural hesitancy to confront many of the specific research issues in a direct fashion, it is assumed, and this will make it necessary to employ a variety of direct interviews, indirect questioning, record tracking and cost estimating, and a variety of other data collection techniques. These can be appropriately coded as per collection method to allow for later data analysis on a variety of fronts.

Specific variables that will be assessed include the level of corruption present in the aid disbursal system, the fear that is felt amongst certain populations and those that might have the ability to report corruption and correct problems, the identification of key individuals that disrupt appropriate aid dispersal, and the level of conflict in specific regions along with aid dispersal in those regions. In addition, sources of aid, individual perceptions of benefit from aid, comparisons of rural and urban perceptions, and identification of areas and communities most in need of aid will be identified. Data can then be collated, analyzed, and subjected to a variety of statistical tests, with the hope that some practical recommendations for correcting problem with aid disbursement can be discovered and implemented.

Proposed Limitations

There are several significant limitations that have been identified as potential problems in conducting this proposed research. The sheer geography of the country is prohibitive to movement from region to region, and this is exacerbated by security issues associated with such movement. Access to the individuals that would provide the most useful information in interviews is also expected to be severely limited and fraught with security concerns, and the level of fear that commonly accessible individuals might have when it comes to discussing these issues might prevent open and honest answers, or the collection of answers at all. Finally, the direct problems associated with corruption -- one of the features of the current situation in Afghanistan that warrants this research in the first place -- and the infighting between various groups and indiviudas makes it highly unlikely that reliable information could be obtained from the most relevant sources even if they could be accessed.

Theoreticla Conclusions

First, it is initially assumed that aid is not going where it is needed most given the current disparity from region to region and population to population when it comes to the actual development and security of the country. Working under this assumption and many of the other facts that remained consistent in a review of the literature on the subject, it is assumed that a great deal of corruption will be found. These rather simple conclusions are likely to be accompanied by more substantial, complex, and meaningful findings in addition.

One conclusion that might be rather surprising to some but would actually make sense given certain typically social interactions is that, corruption notwithstanding, the individuals that direct the flow of aid will by and large believe that they are acting in the nation's best long-term interests. It is also theorized that the projects receiving the bulk of aid and even some of the funds inappropriately funneled to specific individuals and entities not involved in infrastructure development or other direct aid provision will be geared towards the spread of commerce and explicitly economic enterprises, and that social services and the spread of democracy and access to basic infrastructure will come in quite low in terms of perceived importance for aid dispersal. From these conclusions, broader conclusions regarding where the money is going (to people that want to make more money) and why (because it makes them richer and because they think it will ultimately benefit the country) can be drawn.

Conclusion and Implications for Future Research

Understanding where aid is coming from and where it is going in Afghanistan is essential to helping this country rebuild itself in a stronger and more democratic fashion. This research will help identify these features, and will lay the groundwork for future research regarding the spread of corruption in the Afghan government, methods of overcoming tribal and regional allegiances, and methods of dispersing aid in a direct manner that circumvents corruptive efforts. Continuing efforts in these areas will yield valuable information for Afghanistan and the region's development and stability.

References

Ahmad, K. (2002). Regional instability further slows Afghanistan's reconstruction. The Lancet 360: 736.

Barfield, T. (2010). Afghanistan: A Cultural and Political History. Princeton: Princeton University Press.

Constable, P. (2007). A wake-up call in Afghanistan. Journal of Democracy 18(2): 84-98.

Ford, N. & Davis, A. (2001). Chaos in Afghanistan: Famine, aid, and bombs. The Lancet 358: 1543.

Jensen, K. (2011). Obstacles to Accessing the State Justice System in Rural Afghanistan. Indiana Journal of Global Legal Studies 18(2): 929-50.

Marsden, P. (2003). Afghanistan: the reconstruction process. International Affairs 79(1): 91-105.

Mills, M. & Kitch, S. (2006).… [END OF PREVIEW]

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Afghan Proposal Foreign Aid.  (2012, May 2).  Retrieved April 23, 2019, from https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/afghan-proposal-foreign-aid/755897

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"Afghan Proposal Foreign Aid."  Essaytown.com.  May 2, 2012.  Accessed April 23, 2019.
https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/afghan-proposal-foreign-aid/755897.