"The Bottom Line is: We Are After Human Development": Nora Cruz Quebral
and The Evolution of Development Communication
December 9-10, 1971 marked the emergence of development communication (devcom) as a concept that planted the seed for its academic discipline and programmes at the University of the Philippines Los Baños
This was the occasion when Nora Cruz Quebral first publicly presented her ideas on devcomm in a paper titled "Development Communication in the Agricultural Context," which she delivered in a symposium honouring the outgoing dean of the College of Agriculture. (Quebral later published the paper as "Development Communication" in Solidarity, 1972.
It was reprinted as "What Do We Mean by "˜Development Communication?" in International Development Review, 1973-1972, and with its original title and a new foreword in the Asian Journal of Communication
It is also included in the upcoming CFSC Anthology: Historical and Contemporary Readings, 2006.)
The occasion also marked Quebral's emergence as devcom doyenne this side of the globe""and she
was and still is the graceful, poised NCQ as we more commonly call her
is also a sharp, critical thinker and writer par excellence.
Today, Quebral is professor emeritus and acknowledged pioneer of the development communication discipline at UPLB.
In 1971, when she delivered her landmark 1971 paper on devcom, NCQ was then chair of the department of agricultural communication at the then University of the Philippines College of Agriculture (UPCA, later the lead unit of UPLB).
The department was renamed "development communication" three years later, alongside the approval of the B.S. in development communication (BSDC) degree at UPLB
Perhaps it would be enlightening to first know who Nora Cruz Quebral
is: NCQ is the eldest of six children, the independent daughter of an elementary school English teacher.
academic abilities, her
father would ask her
to help correct his
confides, helps explain her
admitted aversion to teaching formal courses, though she
always preferred being out in the field trying out devcom concepts.
In fact, her
next book will focus on devcom as practice.
opted for early retirement from the University in 1988.
When schools closed at the beginning of the Second World War, three months before NCQ would have graduated from high school, she learned stenography and typing and started working as a secretary.
continued being self-reliant as a working student during part of her
In 1952, two years after she earned her bachelor's in English (graduating magna cum laude) UPCA recruited the young woman to its rural campus to be copy editor of its Journal of Philippine Agriculturist.
In addition, Quebral
acknowledges the support and encouragement of Gloria Feliciano, Jan Servaes, Luis Ramiro Beltran, among others.