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Home Volume 15 Number 2
Volume 15 Number 2 January 2007

Development of a verbal autopsy tool for investigating cause of death: the Kanchanaburi project

Pramote Prasartkul
Yawarat Porapakham
Patama Vapattanawong
Jongjit Rittirong

               The study described the development of a verbal autopsy (VA) tool, in which a relative or caretaker of a descendent was interviewed about symptoms or events preceding the death, to identify the underlying cause of death (COD).
               The tool applied in this study transforms detailed VA questionnaires via an algorithm into a probable COD. To test the validity of the tool, preliminary matching was carried out between COD from two independent sources, from expert review of hospital records and from the VA tool algorithm. Validity testing was carried out in 2003 by examining 921 cases of hospital deaths in Kanchanaburi province occurring in 2002. After excluding VA interview non-response and insufficient medical record cases, 652 COD cases were compared. The test indicated a tolerable degree of validity and suggested revisions that helped to improve the questionnaire. The revised version has been coded as a computer program to substitute for the voluminous paper questionnaire in hand-held computers for convenient use.
icon Abstract (9.08 kB) icon Fulltext (220.92 kB)


Community and School Participation: A Path of Decentralization to Community Empowerment

Umaporn Pattaravanich Kritaya Archavanitkul
Rossarin Gray
Napaporn Havanon

               The main objective of the study is to examine community and school participation in education management, leading to community empowerment. There are two specific objectives as follows. Firstly, to understand the basic thoughts of both community and school toward community participation in education provision. Secondly, to demonstrate the process of community and school participation in education provision to the path of community empowerment. Qualitative data were collected in a district of western Thailand by the methods of focus group discussion, and in-depth interview from relevant persons; namely community leaders, student's parents, school administrators, teachers, and students. The findings show that there is difference in basic thoughts of both community and school toward community participation in education provision. The difference of basic thoughts results from school's inaccessibility to community potential and knowledge. As for the process of community and school participation in education management, it was found that factor leading to a real local power is the acceptance of community knowledge not financial support from the community.

icon Abstract (9.21 kB)icon Fulltext (309.14 kB) 


Influences of Population Dynamics on Agricultural Land Use in Rural Northeastern Thailand: A Case Study in Nang Rong District

Thanut Wongsaichue Yothin Sawangdee
Ronald R. Rindfuss


               This is a population study that examines the role of population dynamics, such as fertility, mortality, and out-migration in rural households on agricultural land use. The data of the Nang Rong Projects in 1994-2000 were used for research. The results show that population events which occur in the household affect decision-makings on utilization of land for agriculture. For example, as results show, a death event in the household reduces the probability of agricultural land use, as does an out-migration event. The focus is on household factors, comprising family size, number of labor in household, mean age of labor, number of facility items, age of household head, percentage of agricultural occupation in household, land owned, and number of sibling networks. When household factors are controlled, the results show a pattern of agricultural land use in rural areas following a single population event or several simultaneous events.

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The Learning Reform for Environmental Problems Solution in Community

Wasin Pluemcharoen

               The learning reform for environment conservation in the community is aimed to develop a curriculum and manuals on environment for schools and teachers based on the Participatory Action Research (PAR). Through the use of PAR, schools can employ the developed curriculum, manuals and project proposal writing methods in their communities. This leads to collaboration among school administrators, teachers, students, forest officers, community leaders and local people to conduct a study and develop research projects for the benefits of their communities.

icon Abstract (8.28 kB)icon Fulltext (205.52 kB)


Understanding Corruption through Policy: Case Study of the Corruption in Medicine and Medical Supplies of Ministry of Public Health, 1998

Sataporn Roengtam

               Objective of this study is to present how policy discourses were constructed in order to formulate and manipulate public policy which is the instrument for corruption or corruption through policy. The case study which will be used is the corruption in medicine and medical supply procurement of the Ministry of Public Health, 1998. This study presents concept and vital role of policy discourse for defining the whole new public policy or altering the existed one for the purpose of creating opportunities or ways for seeking private interest of the culprits and their followers, in other words, this process can make corruption look legitimate. 

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Understanding Contraception Use among Muslims of India, Pakistan and Bangladesh

Usha Ram
Laxmi Kant Dwivedi
Baishali Goswami

               Within social demography, religion is frequently cited as an important factor forming the basis of one's identity. Various religious doctrines are expected to differ considerably with respect to their pro-natalist slant and acceptability of contraception and abortion. Values and practices placed on a list of demographic parameters could have intended and unintended effects on the demographic performances of a particular religious community. A great deal of attention has been focused on the influence of Islam on reproductive choices because high levels of fertility characterize the majority of Muslim communities. However, Muslims across the globe are not behaving in a similar fashion. Keeping this view in mind, the present paper examines the attitude of Muslim women towards the adoption of contraceptives in three neighboring countries namely India, Pakistan and Bangladesh. National Family Health Survey (1998-99) data for India and Demographic Health Survey data for Pakistan-1992-93 and Bangladesh-1993-94 are used to carry out the study. It is clear from our analyses that the religious component of prohibition against contraceptives is not that high in Bangladesh as it is in Pakistan and also to some extent in India. Hence the goodwill of authorities in framing the policies may work in achieving the desired demographic goals, defying the conservative religious dictation. 

icon Abstract (13.4 kB)icon Fulltext (159.91 kB)


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