Accepted paper:

Ethnography of State-NGO collaboration in the field of HIV/AIDS in Brazil


Andrea Fachel Leal (Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS))

Paper short abstract:

This paper reflects upon an evaluation of the implementation of pilot projects for the Diffusion of Effective Behavioral Interventions (DEBI) in Brazil. The process evaluation, based on ethnographic methods, was ordered by the Brazilian Ministry of Health and the Center for Disease Control (CDC).

Paper long abstract:

In the context of the Cooperation Agreement (CoAg) signed between the Department of Sexually Transmitted Diseases, AIDS and Viral Hepatitis of the Ministry of Health of Brazil, the National School of Public Health / FIOCRUZ and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC/USA), centered on capacity building and technology transfer, Brazil tested a set of DEBI (Diffusion of Effective Behavioral Interventions) interventions. The main goal was to test the application of three models of intervention for the prevention of HIV / STD in Brazil. Therefore, a first level of collaboration in the process described involved two national governmental agencies, where one was the recipient of both funds and technology and the other, the donor, whilst a second one was between the AIDS Department and the NGOs. I was hired as an external member with qualitative and evaluative research experience to monitor and evaluate the implementation of the three interventions selected to compose DEBI Brazil. The process evaluation focused on both suitability and adaptation of the interventions to the national context and was carried out in three capitals (Porto Alegre, Rio de Janeiro and Fortaleza). Ethnographic fieldwork identified factors that conditioned, both positive and negatively, the results of the three pilot projects , including different power relations in the collaborative relation between the three NGOs and the national governmental body. The cooperation also involved a certain tension between recipient and donor in the appropriation and adaptation of DEBI, seen in discourses that referred to the ideas of colonialism, autonomy, dependency, and empowerment.

panel G15
Re-thinking collaboration: between research and socio-political interventions