Understanding and enabling marketplace literacy in subsistence contexts: The development of a consumer and entrepreneurial literacy educational program in South India
International Journal of Educational Development Volume 28, Number 3, ISSN 0738-0593 Publisher: Elsevier Ltd
To function in the economic realm, two important resources that individuals need are finances and know-how. Whereas there has been considerable attention on microfinancing, we describe an educational program that focuses on enabling generic skills about the marketplace and complements these important efforts. We conducted research aimed at understanding lives and marketplaces in subsistence contexts in urban and rural parts of a state in South India. We used the research as a basis for developing a consumer and entrepreneurial literacy educational program. This program uses the “know-why”, or an understanding of marketplaces, as a basis for the know-how of being an informed buyer or seller. Despite the difficulties with abstract thinking that low-literate individuals experience, we enable deeper understanding of marketplaces by leveraging the social skills that participants bring to the program and relating educational content back to their lived experiences. Such understanding can enable individuals to place themselves on a path to lifelong learning. Implications of this work for research and practice in non-formal education are discussed.
Viswanathan, M., Gajendiran, S. & Venkatesan, R. (2008). Understanding and enabling marketplace literacy in subsistence contexts: The development of a consumer and entrepreneurial literacy educational program in South India. International Journal of Educational Development, 28(3), 300-319. Elsevier Ltd.