Our field trip is getting really close now. One of us is already in Nepal, while the rest of us are leaving during the weekend. On Monday 5th March we will start our 2 weeks field trip and meeting with our first stakeholders. Therefore, for the last few days, we have been busy getting our backpacks ready. I thought I could share some useful tips with you on what to bring when travelling to a rural area where you might not have access to all kind of services.
1) Agree on the problem first
The project you are working on, is an answer to something. If all the problems have been solved and needs catered, what is there left to do? Nothing, but fortunately that is rarely the case. Rather, there are often way too many things to be addressed. You can’t save the whole world with one project – you know that! But where to start is the trickiest question. People from different backgrounds share different values. A major issue in your view might not be a priority for someone else. To define the problem and a topic you will be working on, it is important to do your background research well, meet and discuss and then meet and discuss again.
2) Choose your partners, let them help and teach you but be in charge of the direction
After the first weeks of discussions, arguments and research, we finally have something to show to the world: a project website! This will be our base camp, a progress diary, our way to communicate with the outer world, our information hub and maybe, in a distant future, our platform to showcase our results.
Our first intensive meeting from 1PM to 6PM this Monday. It really helped to get back on track with our work with the pre-meetings and the actual first lecture. For the assignment of background studies, we decided to split up the work in different subjects and pre-draft it for our meeting in order to present to each other and get a comprehensive picture without doubling the work.
This week started with internal group meeting on Monday – I almost forgot about it. Luckily, we all showed up, even Kristjana was able to join us with a bit of an excusable delay. Apparently, I was not the only one who didn’t work that much on our project during the Christmas break.