ARI evaluates its training program, supported by Fetzer Institute

2013 marks the 40th anniversary of our ARI Rural Leaders Training Program, and we would like to use this opportunity to better understand how our Graduates have impacted their home communities over the years. With the generous support from the Fetzer Institute, we have initiated a long term project to analyze the training based on the participants’ and graduates’ experiences. Our goal is also to know more about what has been most and least useful to ARI Graduates and their communities around the world.

ARI is asking Graduates and Sending Bodies to complete a short survey to gain a balanced understanding of the impact of the training on ARI Graduates, their Sending Bodies, and their communities. We hope that the lessons learned will provide an example of effective leadership development for other organizations around the world. All collected information will be put together, reviewed, and then shared in a special 40th Anniversary publication.

About the surveys

A survey of both Sending Bodies and Graduates has been sent by email to more than 600 people and organizations. The information from this survey will provide information about what skills and knowledge has been most useful and what parts of the training have had the greatest impact.
The survey is available online and as a text document. If you are a Graduate and have not yet received the survey, please contact the research team at

About the interviews

Our team is also conducting interviews of selected Graduates. Interviews will provide the research team with in depth information about the personal and community changes Graduates are able to bring about.

The research team is looking for at least 50 ARI Graduates to personally interview via telephone, Skype, or Google Online Chat. Please contact the team at with your phone number, Skype ID, or Google ID and your full name, country and year of participation.

The research team

Since Winter 2013 Tomoko Arakawa and Yukiko Oyanagi have been working with Sarajean Rossitto, a Tokyo-based NGO consultant, to put together a framework for the review. Since April, 2013 two graduate students from Sophia University, Lisette Robles and Jack Lichten, have been working as research assistants helping with in all aspects of the training program review. This research team has been visiting the ARI interviewing staff and 2013 Participants seeking out their views of the program’s strengths and weaknesses.

Research Team
Lisette Robles, Sarajean Rossitto and Jack Lichten

Should you have any questions, please contact the research team by email ( or by fax through the ARI office (+81-287-37-5833)