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Participatory asset mapping and photovoice interviews to scope cultural and community resources to reduce alcohol harm in Chitwan, Nepal

Dhital, R., Yoeli, H. ORCID: 0000-0001-5505-9366, Adhikari, A. , Luitel, N. P., Nadkarni, A., van Teijlingen, E. & Sin, J. ORCID: 0000-0003-0590-7165 (2023). Participatory asset mapping and photovoice interviews to scope cultural and community resources to reduce alcohol harm in Chitwan, Nepal. Perspectives in Public Health, doi: 10.1177/17579139231180744


Aims: To scope the breadth of existing cultural and community assets and how alcohol drinkers and community health workers perceived them in relation to reducing alcohol-related harm.

Methods: The study was conducted in Chitwan, south-central Nepal, which has considerable alcohol problems. Participatory asset mapping was conducted using field notes, photography, and through engaging with communities to explore how community assets affect alcohol consumption. Semi-structured photovoice interviews were conducted with harmful/hazardous drinkers (AUDIT score 8 to 19) and community health workers. Purposive and snowball sampling were used to recruit participants. During interviews, participants used their photographs to reflect on how community assets influenced alcohol use. Thematic framework analysis was used to analyse the data.

Results: We recruited 12 harmful/hazardous drinkers (3 females) and 6 health workers (2 females). The mean AUDIT score of the former was 12.17 (SD ±2.86). Thematic analysis of the photovoice interviews produced three themes: ‘influences and impact of families and communities’; ‘culture and spirituality’; and ‘nature and the environment’. The community mapping produced five assets that promoted alcohol consumption: (1) availability; (2)advertising; (3) negative attitudes towards users; (4) festivals/gatherings; and (5) illiteracy/ poverty. Six assets that discouraged consumption were: (1) legislation restricting use; (2) community organisations; (3) cultural/spiritual sites; (4) healthcare facilities; (5) family and communities; and (6) women’s community groups. Those from certain ethnic groups consumed more alcohol, experienced more family discord, or felt stigmatised due to their drinking. Assets ‘festivals/gatherings’ and ‘negative attitudes toward users’ and the theme ‘family and communities’ concerned with relationships and community activities were perceived to both promote and reduce alcohol use.

Conclusions: This study provides new insight into a variety of cultural and community assets that promote and reduce alcohol use. The study identifies new possibilities to build on visual participatory and arts-based methods that have potential to be effectively implemented at scale.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License ( which permits any use, reproduction and distribution of the work without further permission provided the original work is attributed as specified on the SAGE and Open Access pages (
Publisher Keywords: alcohol harm; global public health; Nepal; cultural and community assets; photovoice interviews; participatory asset mapping
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine
Departments: School of Health & Psychological Sciences > Nursing
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Available under License Creative Commons: Attribution International Public License 4.0.

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