Topic: NGOs

Simplicity, Accountability and Relationships: Three ways to ensure MEL supports Adaptive Management

Chris Roche, a mate and mentor in all things system-y, reflects on what sounds like a Filipino version of our recent Bologna workshop. The week before Duncan was slaving away in Bologna on adaptive management I was attending an Asia Foundation ‘practitioners’ forum’ in Manila.  The focus of the event was on Monitoring, Evaluation, and […]

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Are Missionaries naturally suited to ‘Doing Development Differently’ and Advocacy?

Missionaries get a bad press in development circles, often caricatured as the cultural and spiritual shock troops of colonialism and imperialism. I’m sure there has sometimes been truth in that, but talking to a roomful of them in Dublin earlier this week, at the annual meeting of Misean Cara (a membership network for missionary organizations) […]

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Seven Rules of Thumb for Adaptive Management – what do you think?

Adaptive Management (aka Doing Development Differently, Thinking and Working Politically) seems to be flavour of the month, at least in my weird bubble of a world, so the next week is going to feature a series of posts on different aspects of what looks like a pretty important ‘movement’ First up, at one of the […]

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Book Review: How to be a Craftivist: the art of Gentle Protest, by Sarah Corbett

I spent an idyllic bank holiday recently in a hammock reading How to be a Craftivist: the art of gentle protest. Seemed fitting somehow, as the book is all about ‘slow activism’. Corbett, an award-winning campaigner and lifelong activist whose leftie parents dragged her along on demos from the age of 3, starts with a […]

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What did I learn from teaching LSE students about advocacy and campaigns?

I spent a week last month marking student assignments. Sounds boring, right? Well it was brain-drainingly hard work, but it was also enthralling. Usually I just give lectures or write stuff, and the level of feedback is pretty cursory. In contrast, marking the assignments for a course you have taught provides a unique peek inside […]

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6 ways Local NGOs in Ghana are facing up to Shrinking Aid Flows

Local NGOs in developing countries face numerous threats, from government crackdowns to dwindling aid budgets. How are they responding? In a recent paper for VOLUNTAS: the International Journal of Voluntary and Nonprofit Organizations (Open Access – yay!),  Albert A. Arhin, Emmanuel Kumi and Oxfam’s Mohammed-Anwar Sadat Adam interviewed 65 people in Ghanaian NGOs, who face less overt repression than in […]

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The Project Cycle in Complex Systems – cartoon version

Jo Rowlands spotted this gem in a recent Intrac Newsletter. It’s drawn by Bill Crooks, based on an original concept by Nigel Simister.

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Turning ‘Leave No One Behind’ from promise to reality: Kevin Watkins on the Power of Convergence

This post is by Kevin Watkins, Chief Executive of Save the Children UK How do you take your Sustainable Development Goals? With a generous sprinkle of motherhood, apple pie and good intentions? If so, the chances are you’re an enthusiast for the commitment to ‘leave no one behind’ in the pursuit of the 2030 development […]

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6 ways Aid Donors can help harness Religious Giving for Development

One of the consequences of writing a blog that covers some off-beat topics is that when someone’s organizing an event on one of them and can’t find qualified speakers, you get invited along to make up the numbers. So it was that I, a lifelong atheist, ended up on a panel at DFID last week […]

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What kind of Evidence Influences local officials? A great example from Guatemala

I met Walter Flores at a Twaweza seminar in Tanzania a couple of months ago, but have only just got round to reading his fascinating paper reflecting on 10 years of trying to improve Public Health in Guatemala. It is short (12 pages), snappily written, with a very crisp, hard-hitting thesis, so no need to […]

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5 Lessons from Working with Businesses to Support Workers around the World

This piece appeared on ETI’s May ‘Leadership Series’ blog yesterday I was present at the birth of ETI 20 years ago. Recently installed at the Catholic aid agency, CAFOD, I was sent off to discuss an obscure initiative to set up a ‘Monitoring and Verification Working Group’ for companies trying to assess labour standards in their […]

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Value for money in UK aid: the good, the bad and the ugly

Cathy Shutt (left, on vintage phone) and Craig Valters unsugar a recent pill on DFID’s approach to Value for Money All aid programmes should be good ‘Value for Money’ – hard to argue with that, right? 8 years ago, DFID put this principle at the heart of its work. Here we reflect on a recent report […]

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