Fellow Since 2002
This profile was prepared when Gus Krobo was elected to the Ashoka Fellowship in 2002.
The New Idea
Gus Krobo is building a citizen forum to guide and monitor the way the government allocates and uses resources for development. The forum consists of a community organizing component, which attracts citizens by sparking grassroots dialogue and research into local development needs, and a policy and advocacy component, which promotes transparency by publicizing government data on development programs, budgets, and expenditures. The community forum, in which people analyze their real needs and decide how they should be addressed, is a powerful means to close the gap between development programs initiated at the district, provincial, or national level, and the reality of what is needed at the village level. To make the forum more effective, Gus Krobo is training leaders in the village to voice the needs and decisions of their communities, to share information and common problems and successes with other villages, and to improve their bargaining position by building a national network. Through all these efforts, Gus Krobo is promoting a critical awareness of development issues. His model is replicable in other regions seeking to overcome a culture of silence and apathy fostered by years of authoritarian rule.