Identifying target groups and individuals is largely a process of thinking through, as specifically as possible, who you want to reach or influence through the project. You also need to identify the method(s) by which you want to reach them:
Consider too the sort of relationship you have, or want to have, with each group/individual. Is it an impersonal ‘informing’ one-way relationship or a strong interactive ‘engaging’ relationship? The stronger the relationship, the higher the priority of the group/individual.
The table below shows that, for your high-priority target groups/individuals (those you want to engage with), you should use all methods of communication.
|Type of relationship|
|Priority of groups/individuals||Informing||Targeted one-way||Targeted two-way||Engaging|
|Low-medium priority (providing information)||High||High||Low||Low|
|Low priority (providing information)||High||Low||Low||Low|
Answering the following questions will help you identify the groups/individuals you need to reach. Those groups/individuals that appear in more than one response are particularly important for you to reach.
Natural resource management projects generally have 3 major types of user—policy makers, planners and practitioners. The wider community may also be interested in the project. The priority you assign to groups/individuals will depend on your project. For example, if farmers are involved through participatory action research, they will be a high-priority group for you to engage with.
Use the checklist provided to help you identify your target groups/individuals.
Then, take a reality check on your list of target groups/individuals by considering the following four questions: