A tale of two perspectives

Today I compared the NGO Development Lexicon with the East African Story Lexicon from yesterday’s post.

Top 50 words (Left: stories, Right: NGOs)

Story tag cloud versus the NGO International Development tag cloud

Comparing word frequencies

Tag clouds don’t show much. So I compared the difference in the order of the words in each lexicon. First, top 50 words from stories. The number beside the term is where that same word appears in the NGO Development Lexicon.

So ‘people’ is the most used word in community stories, and it appears 9 slots lower in the Development Lexicon. These two words are frequently used by both groups. A score of -2000 means that word was not in the top 2000 words used by NGOs:

Story-centered world view:

Word Relative NGO position
‘people’ -9
‘water’ -7
‘school’ 0
‘help’ -8
‘children’ 4
‘community’ 0
‘organization’ -199
‘came’ -2000
‘life’ -17
‘kibera’ -806
‘get’ -101
‘group’ -178
‘helped’ -1123
‘day’ -134
‘good’ -232
‘kenya’ -2000
‘started’ -1385
‘government’ -153
‘time’ -114
‘food’ 3
‘man’ -2000
‘problem’ -324
‘money’ -275
‘education’ 24
‘called’ -1484
‘living’ -13
‘village’ -33
‘area’ -88
‘take’ -162
‘go’ -105
‘due’ -80
‘work’ 7
‘come’ -435
‘need’ 3
‘youth’ 21
‘poor’ 15
‘years’ -38
‘parents’ -48
‘youths’ -409
‘country’ -162
‘two’ -139
‘got’ -2000
‘girls’ 31
‘home’ -29
‘use’ -14
‘went’ -2000
‘give’ -98
‘know’ -851

Words with biggest disparity

Next I show the top 50 words ranked by disparity in use frequency. All of these words are used frequently by NGOs. The “rank in stories” is how frequently that same word appears among the top 2000 words used in community stories. (The lower the rank, the more frequently stories use that word.) So all of these words represent the language most used by NGOs and least used by community members.

NGO (International Development)-centered world view:

Word Rank in Stories
‘reading’ 1837
‘cultural’ 1883
’empower’ 1736
‘climate’ 1932
‘hundreds’ 1974
‘tools’ 1764
‘establish’ 1976
‘participate’ 1852
’empowerment’ 1541
‘reproductive’ 1681
‘percent’ 1791
‘donations’ 1588
‘include’ 1590
‘rehabilitation’ 1679
‘purchase’ 1908
‘clinic’ 1667
‘educational’ 1410
‘classes’ 1786
‘equipment’ 1575
‘courses’ 1927
‘skill’ 1906
‘sport’ 1866
‘technical’ 1630
‘south’ 1469
‘allow’ 1423
‘womens’ 1551
‘ability’ 1818
‘scholarship’ 1652
‘homeless’ 1530
‘potential’ 1543
‘increasing’ 1694
‘english’ 1671
‘receive’ 1387
‘vocational’ 1367
‘sources’ 1905
‘impact’ 1350
‘prepare’ 1960
‘legal’ 1618
‘music’ 1322
‘network’ 1389
‘middle’ 1516
‘household’ 1695
‘rates’ 1558
‘refugees’ 1539
‘goal’ 1458
‘language’ 1604
‘seed’ 1745
‘delivery’ 1956
‘institute’ 1660
‘addition’ 1511

Shocking disparities from above list: EMPOWER, EMPOWERMENT, CLIMATE, CLINIC, READING, REFUGEES, DELIVERY, and REPRODUCTIVE These are NGOish words.

Words used by both groups about equally:

Regardless of how common these words are in each lexicon, they’re used about equally as much. A positive score means NGOs use the more often; a negative score means storytellers use them more often.

Word relative difference in ranking
‘meeting’ 98
‘care’ 96
‘act’ 93
‘helps’ 92
‘better’ 88
‘wealth’ 87
‘planting’ 84
‘free’ 82
‘abuse’ 79
‘programme’ 79
‘change’ 78
‘lack’ 78
‘lives’ 77
‘start’ 77
‘girls’ 76
‘fight’ 72
‘making’ 70
‘job’ 69
‘family’ 68
‘young’ 66
‘ground’ 60
‘baby’ 60
‘youth’ 58
‘parent’ 57
‘poor’ 53
‘please’ 52
‘education’ 50
‘villagers’ 48
‘die’ 42
‘work’ 41
‘need’ 39
‘live’ 38
‘use’ 33
‘main’ 32
‘sponsorship’ 31
‘diseases’ 24
‘step’ 24
‘food’ 23
‘serious’ 23
‘secondary’ 18
‘home’ 17
‘plants’ 17
‘living’ 15
‘especially’ 12
‘children’ 9
‘part’ 9
‘month’ 8
‘organized’ 7
‘community’ 6
‘school’ 3
‘years’ 1
‘trees’ 0
‘help’ -4
‘village’ -4
‘water’ -5
‘council’ -7
‘people’ -8
‘life’ -8
‘parents’ -8
‘studies’ -9
‘feel’ -13
‘born’ -18
‘examinations’ -18
‘bigger’ -19
‘enabled’ -20
‘hospital’ -21
‘finding’ -21
‘oh’ -21
‘society’ -23
‘situation’ -23
‘requirements’ -23
‘find’ -24
‘post’ -25
‘rustling’ -25
‘pride’ -27
‘problems’ -28
‘hate’ -28
‘scholastic’ -29
‘industries’ -30
‘injuries’ -31
‘creativity’ -32
‘gang’ -33
‘right’ -34
‘broken’ -35
‘diet’ -36
‘abusing’ -37
‘salary’ -38
‘plant’ -39
‘fm’ -39
‘dangers’ -41
‘birds’ -42
‘evil’ -43
‘determined’ -45
‘imagine’ -46
‘due’ -47
‘stated’ -47
‘situated’ -48
‘give’ -49
‘wondering’ -50
‘victoria’ -51
‘requirement’ -53
‘treated’ -54
‘shades’ -54
‘question’ -55
‘rakai’ -56
‘helping’ -57
‘men’ -57
‘area’ -58
‘periods’ -58
‘sisters’ -59
‘landed’ -60
‘programe’ -61
‘death’ -63
‘educated’ -63
‘mei’ -63
‘destruction’ -64
‘hearted’ -65
‘various’ -67
‘gun’ -67
‘leave’ -68
‘machines’ -69
‘deadly’ -70
‘placed’ -71
‘taps’ -72
‘go’ -73
‘choice’ -74
‘highly’ -75
‘discipline’ -75
‘visit’ -76
‘master’ -77
‘deny’ -78
‘citizens’ -79
‘searching’ -80
‘stolen’ -81
‘donated’ -82
‘convinced’ -82
‘championship’ -83
‘law’ -84
‘supplying’ -84
‘unicef’ -85
‘percentage’ -86
‘forums’ -87
‘kicked’ -88
‘get’ -90
‘maintained’ -90
‘long’ -92
‘buy’ -93
‘theres’ -93
‘time’ -95
‘two’ -96
‘heavy’ -96
‘oclock’ -97
‘kalenjins’ -98

That’s a start. I’m not sure if this is helpful, or interesting yet. It simply confirms my prior suspicion that what really is most useful is to allow each NGO to see how their language differs from the people in a particular community they serve. That will take a bit more tinkering.

Advertisements

7 thoughts on “A tale of two perspectives

  1. Just for kicks, I ran the MILLENNIUM DEVELOPMENT GOALS 2010 REPORT through the same python script (source is here: http://www.un.org/millenniumgoals/pdf/MDG%20Report%202010%20En%20r15%20-low%20res%2020100615%20-.pdf)

    These are all the words that appear at least 10 times in that report, representing the UN and it’s way of talking about International Development:

    countries,221
    cent,221
    report,205
    en,160
    r14,160
    finalindd,160
    pm,160
    asia,148
    women,142
    africa,126
    regions,102
    developing,92
    children,86
    subsaharan,85
    people,82
    million,82
    united,82
    development,81
    data,76
    progress,69
    areas,62
    world,61
    goals,58
    millennium,57
    america,54
    number,54
    urban,53
    southern,50
    target,49
    population,49
    rural,48
    poverty,46
    economic,45
    education,45
    mdg,44
    living,41
    health,41
    hiv,41
    households,39
    deaths,39
    poorest,38
    girls,37
    southeastern,37
    access,37
    global,35
    international,35
    northern,35
    proportion,33
    developed,33
    caribbean,33
    â©,33
    increased,33
    nations,32
    crisis,32
    use,32
    western,31
    page,31
    remains,31
    eastern,30
    water,30
    increase,30
    high,29
    billion,28
    malaria,28
    latin,28
    estimated,27
    treatment,27
    ve,27
    employment,27
    new,26
    coverage,26
    available,26
    four,25
    school,25
    percentage,25
    rate,25
    workers,25
    men,24
    prevalence,24
    times,24
    risk,23
    rates,23
    mortality,23
    poor,22
    underweight,22
    nancial,21
    years,21
    half,21
    national,21
    low,21
    food,21
    aged,21
    due,21
    levels,21
    sanitation,21
    richest,20
    cases,20
    reduction,20
    gap,20
    young,20
    mdgs,19
    african,19
    lack,19
    boys,19
    cis,19
    growth,19
    total,18
    oceania,18
    birth,18
    efforts,18
    year,18
    care,18
    average,18
    species,18
    age,18
    estimates,17
    wealth,17
    may,17
    social,17
    primary,17
    funding,17
    improved,17
    maternal,17
    europe,17
    •,17
    child,16
    reducing,16
    time,16
    region,16
    skilled,16
    th,16
    family,16
    remain,16
    share,16
    labour,16
    higher,16
    interventions,16
    gender,16
    bene,16
    increases,16
    compared,16
    nets,15
    aid,15
    surveys,15
    nearly,15
    reduced,15
    large,15
    vulnerable,15
    services,15
    declined,15
    lower,15
    based,15
    populations,14
    despite,14
    debt,14
    expected,14
    change,14
    disparities,14
    show,14
    ts,14
    two,14
    continue,14
    continues,14
    oda,14
    tuberculosis,14
    receive,14
    including,14
    asiasubsaharan,14
    need,14
    needed,13
    climate,13
    cant,13
    republic,13
    receiving,13
    especially,13
    jobs,13
    major,13
    world’s,13
    income,13
    slum,13
    knowledge,13
    net,12
    household,12
    millions,12
    terms,12
    pregnancy,12
    assistance,12
    ldcs,12
    regionsdeveloped,12
    live,12
    achieve,12
    open,12
    period,12
    signi,12
    conditions,12
    drinking,12
    meet,12
    reached,12
    quality,12
    asialatin,12
    indicators,12
    loss,12
    refugees,12
    increasing,11
    improve,11
    duerto,11
    current,11
    market,11
    secondary,11
    residence,11
    tariffs,11
    sara,11
    majority,11
    impact,11
    decline,11
    lives,11
    prices,11
    slums,11
    continued,11
    respectively,11
    undernourished,11
    asiasoutheastern,11
    greater,11
    enrolment,11
    second,10
    regional,10
    result,10
    antiretroviral,10
    level,10
    ratio,10
    production,10
    births,10
    africawestern,10
    area,10
    important,10
    far,10
    valero,10
    free,10
    action,10
    states,10
    fund,10
    organization,10
    un,10
    biodiversity,10
    rst,10
    worldwide,10
    decade,10
    key,10
    cient,10
    largest,10
    defecation,10
    universal,10

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s