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Reflections on the Future of Family Planning

B. D. Misra, Ruth Simmons, Ali Ashraf and George Simmons
Economic and Political Weekly
Vol. 12, No. 36 (Sep. 3, 1977), pp. 1583-1590
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/4365904
Page Count: 8
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Reflections on the Future of Family Planning
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Abstract

The analysis of family planning activities in rural Uttar Pradesh, in terms of four analytical constructs, suggests a consistent gap between plan and performance both at the level of interaction with the client population and at the level of organising. This gap has existed both before 1975 and during the emergency period. This paper argues that the following three guidelines are of crucial importance in discussing future courses of action for family planning. These are: (1) the strategy chosen for client transactions has to be suited to the client population; (2) the organising strategy has to be suited to the client strategy; and (3) the organising strategy has to be suited to the institutional context within which it is implemented. It is relatively easy to define a client strategy that should work in theory but can not be implemented by the existing structures. Similarly, it is possible to have an organisation which is well designed but inappropriate to the family planning task. The difficult task, then, is to find a set of strategies that suit both the client needs and the constraints of the organisation. This paper suggests three future courses of action in family planning - viz, restructuring the external environment; marginal alterations of programme organisation; and ways to reduce the burden of organising.

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