Status of Development Communication Research

An Examination of the Recent Trends in The Philippines

  • Marife R. De Torres Central Luzon State University, Science City of Muñoz, Nueva Ecija, Philippines
  • Emely M. Amoloza University of the Philippines Open University, Los Baños, Laguna, Philippines
  • Pamela A. Custodio University of the Philippines Los Baños, Laguna, Philippines
  • Anna Roffel O. Lozada Marinduque State College, Marinduque, Philippines
  • Marielle J. Pasuquin DOST-PCAARRD, Los Baños, Laguna, Philippines
  • Crina E. Tañongon University of the Philippines Cebu, Cebu City, Philippines
Keywords: development communication, DevCom UP Los Baños, communication research


This study is a response to the challenge of Development Communication (DevCom) scholar Felix Librero to analyse the status and trends in UP Los Baños DevCom research that may help in reinvigorating the research thrust of the college attuned to the needs of time. As a rejoinder to previous efforts of DevCom scholars Gomez and Librero, the authors looked into 35 graduate research studies: 19 Masteral theses and 16 Doctoral dissertations that were produced from 2008 to 2015. The papers were evaluated according to a) Communication Tradition b) DevCom Thread c) Theories used, and d) Research Method employed. The review also revealed that DevCom research is primarily inclined to the Cybernetic tradition, still predominantly influenced by the modernisation paradigm, as demonstrated by the heavy use of linear, one-way communication models and theories such as diffusion of innovations, two-step flow, or extension approaches. This is more evident in the classification of Devcom research into the typologies of Colle and Quebral. Majority of the researches can be classified in the extension thread, although there is a growing interest in community participation theme. On the other hand, following Quebral’s typologies, most of the MS researches are people research, while PhD dissertations are varied and cut across people research, normative and policy researches. The quantitative method, which has been a preferred approach since 1985 when Gomez declared it dominant in DevCom research and even until 2012 in Librero’s review of researches from 2001 to 2010, remained popular among more than half of the researchers while the rest ventured into qualitative, except for a few who tried mixed methods. In a concerted effort to make a synthesis of what has been done and realised so far in DevCom research areas and concerns, the proponents hope to contribute to the strengthening of the research culture in DevCom while putting into consideration its responsiveness to the needs of society.

How to Cite
De Torres, M., Amoloza, E., Custodio, P., Lozada, A. R., Pasuquin, M., & Tañongon, C. (2021). Status of Development Communication Research. The Journal of Development Communication, 32(2), 59-72. Retrieved from