The Impact of Positive Deviance
The successful application of the PD approach has been documented in more than 41 countries in nutrition and a variety of other sectors from public health to education to business. The following is an illustrative sample of PD-informed program impact over the 15 years:
- Sustained 65 to 80% reduction in childhood malnutrition in Vietnamese communities, reaching a population of 2.2 million people.
- Significant reduction in childhood malnutrition in communities in 41 countries around the world.
- Reduction in neo-natal mortality & morbidity in Pashtun communities in Pakistan and minority communities in Vietnam with near universal adoption of protective behaviors and social change.
- Estimated 50% increase in primary school student retention in 10 participating schools in Missiones, Argentina.
- Documented reduction in girl trafficking in impoverished communities in East Java, Indonesia.
- Thousands of documented female circumcisions averted in Egypt and the formation of 12 “FGM free” communities.
- In the Spring of 2005 Merck Mexico began a project to address the issue that only 13 out of 21 districts at Merck Mexico had a sales coverage of 100% or greater. Within 8 months all districts (100%) were covering their sales target.
Quotes that embody the essence of PD:
"Learn from the people
Plan with the people
Begin with what they have
Build on what they know
Of the best leaders
When the task is accomplished
The people all remark
We have done it ourselves."
~Lao-Tzu Tao Te Ching
"We dance around in a circle and suppose while the truth sits in the middle and knows."