Participatory epidemiology and veterinary research

Some uses of PE in veterinary research include:

Diagnostic studies
In Sudan PE has been used with conventional veterinary investigation methods to confirm the diagnosis of a chronic wasting disease in cattle. The report Learning About Liei can be downloaded here (file size 1.65MB).

Understanding epizootic disease dynamics in pastoralist ecosystems
In AU/IBAR, PE has been combined with simple disease models to improve understanding of the epidemiology of rinderpest and CBPP in east Africa. Study reports for rinderpest (file size 1.25MB) and CBPP (file size 396KB) are available.

Identifying 'best bet' disease control options
PE was used with Orma pastoralists in Kenya to understand their preferences for controlling bovine trypanosomiasis. The field report can be downloaded here (file size 570KB).

Exploring association
In Tanzania, matrix scoring and proportional piling methods were adapted to investigate possible association between a chronic heat intolerance syndrome in cattle and previous foot-and-mouth disease. Reprints of a paper describing the study are available from

In addition, PE-type approaches have been widely used in participatory livestock research in India, and in Livestock Farmer Field Schools in Kenya.

Useful references

Catley, A. and Mariner, J. (2002). Where There Is No Data: Participatory Approaches to Veterinary Epidemiology in Pastoral Areas of the Horn of Africa. Drylands Programme Issue Paper 110, International Institute for Environment and Development, London.
download PDF English version (file size 156KB) download PDF French version (file size 129KB)

Conroy, C. (2004). Participatory Livestock Research: A Guide. ITDG Publishing, Rugby.