Module M05 - Enabling and Disabling Environments

Unit M05U04 - Action Planning in Response to Enabling and Disabling Factors


This Unit introduces the SWOT analysis and its use in identifying and evaluating strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats that project implementers may face within the context of an intervention with a participatory GIS component. The SWOT analysis helps develop options which feed into a strategy and action plan to deal with external threats and exploit opportunities by matching external possibilities with internal capabilities. SWOT builds on enabling factors in order to overcome or mitigate the potential impact of disabling factors. In this sense, SWOT is useful for action planning in response to the identification and analysis of enabling and disabling factors.

Trainees will be exposed to the SWOT analytical process by means of interactive sessions and exercises to be conducted in the course of this Unit.

Unit objectives / expected outcomes

After the completion of the Unit the trainee will be able to:

  • explain the SWOT analysis;
  • assess enabling and disabling factors and plan consequent action with the SWOT analysis.

Content outline, main topics covered and suggested sequencing

This Unit focuses on the topics listed below:

  1. Action planning in response to enabling and disabling factors (PPT No.1) (30 min)
  2. SWOT analysis (Exercise No. 1) (90 min)

Components of the Unit


Handouts for Trainee (to be distributed in printed format):

Handouts for Trainee (to be distributed in digital format)



2 hours

Additional trainer resources

  • Groenendijk, Liza (2003). Planning and Management Tools. A Reference Book. Enschede: ITC, Special Lecture Notes Series
  • Groenendijk, Liza (2002). SWOT Analysis. Enschede: ITC

Equipment needed

Computer and digital projector, pin boards or wall space, two large sheets of craft paper (1.2 m x 1.2 m), 12 metacards (A5) in four colours for each participant, masking tape, scissor and pins

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