Multiple Realities in Light of the SDGs: The Reality Check Approach in Different Contexts

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

The commitment to ‘leave no one behind’ has been a key feature of all the discussions on the post-2015 agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The idea that ‘no goal should be met unless it is met for everyone’ is well established in the rhetoric around the goals. In theory, this means ensuring that every individual achieves the full package of rights and opportunities of the SDGs. In the spirit of the SDGs, Chambers (2017) views the reality check approach (RCA) as a ‘methodological revolution’ that can bring the up-to-date realities of those who are not to be left behind credibly and persuasively to policymakers, professionals, and the public. RCA values people’s perceptions, emphasizing context and relevance by exploring the “how” and “why” questions regarding choices and behaviors rather than focusing on just the outcomes. The presentation describes two studies in Indonesia on how RCA has been used in very different contexts to embrace and understand multiple people’s realities: (i) the first study elicits perspectives, observations, and experiences of people living in poverty on their household financial management; whereas (ii) the second study explores perspectives and experiences of the research culture at universities in Indonesia. The two studies demonstrate the application of RCA in different contexts and how this method distinguishes itself from other human-centered approaches in reaching inclusivity.


  1. Peter Riddell-Carre (Team Leader, the Reality Check Approach Plus team)
  2. Yulia Sugandi (Lead Researchers, the Reality Check Approach Plus team)
10:00 - 12:00 (GMT+7)
SMERU Annex (Graha Bintang, 6th Floor) Jl. Cikini Raya No. 55 Jakarta
Contact Name 
The SMERU Research Institute
Contact Email

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