Although a central part of a population programme, the limitations of IEC often make it a
weak point. IEC is an action programme with three parts:
Information. The aim is to provide easy access for all sectors of the population to know l e d ge
l i ke ly to improve their lives and fight mistaken beliefs or ru m o u rs wh i ch may adve rs e ly infl uence people’s attitudes and behav i o u r. Inform ation is often provided ve rt i c a l ly corre s p o n ding to the Shannonian linear commu n i c at i o n model wh i ch fa c i l i t ates sending data and k n ow l e d ge from a transmitter to a re c e ive r t h rough a ch a n n e l .
Education. Teaching is conveying knowledge, but education aims at intellectual growth, along
with physical, moral and aesthetic training. It i n cludes eve rything that influences people
throughout their life – things that come from their family, school or job, as well as mass communications and religious, economic, social and political institutions which they are part of.
Communication. Communication is a process of active and interactive exchange between one or
more transmitters and several receivers with the aim of getting people to adopt desirable and recommended attitudes and behav i o u r. Va ri o u s m e t h o d s , l i n g u i s t i c, c o m p u t e r, p e rs o n - t o - p e rson, can be used. IEC involves a wide range of action: the definition
of a people’s socio-cultural identity (their knowledge, attitudes, practices, beliefs, assets
and limitations); the conception and execution of social communication programmes; the production and use of teaching materials and the spread of messages to persuade the population
to change habits, attitudes, beliefs and practices that are considered unsuitable or harmful to sustainable development.
The IEC approach highlights: the aims of e a ch sector, the institutional fra m ewo rk in
which the activity takes place, the programmes carried out, and the assets and limitations of