Advocating for Research in a Different Culture

Hello! I am a 2nd year MSP student. Some of my classmates and I just read one of the articles on your website about “Stuttering in Africa: From Hopelessness to Recovery”. In the article, the author said that in rural parts of Africa some older, out-of-date interventions are being used. If going to another culture/country, how would you suggest addressing issues like this? How could you kindly yet firmly advocate for what research says in a culture that may not value research or the scientific method like we do?

Thanks so much!

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Advocating for Research in a Different Culture — 1 Comment

  1. From my own personal experience in meeting online (and in person) with several people especially from Africa (and also in China) who at first knew only ways of trying to treat stuttering were what came down from tradition in their culture. With the advent of internet access, starting in 1995, they began to research newer ideas from the Stuttering Home Page (opened in 1995), the French stuttering association (opened in 1997), the British Stammering association and the Stuttering Foundation (of America) as well as the ISAD online conferences all of which started in 1998. The people in Africa (one who taught himself English so he could read about stuttering information online) educated themselves and became exceptional advocates for sharing information about the cause and treatment of stuttering, and also became involved themselves in current research (a stuttering gene was discovered by NIH in a large family from Cameroon). They continue to help change older “out of date” interventions. Those kinds of assumptions about stuttering die hard. People in rural areas especially still may have trouble knowing about what current ideas are. There are still some people in the U.S. that if you ask what causes stuttering, answer “tickling the child.” We all need to continue to find ways to share good information about stuttering, here in the US and also around the world.

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