Topic: NGOs

How to Monitor and Evaluate an Adaptive Programme: 7 Takeaways

I generally try to avoid ‘inside baseball’ aid discussions that make sense mainly to practitioners, but this piece by Gloria Sikustahili, Julie Adkins, Japhet Makongo & Simon Milligan was so interesting and sensible, I made an exception. We’ve all been there. We’ve drowned in the weight of programme documentation; the need to capture everything, to […]

Read More »

The Hidden Life of Theories of Change

We’re getting down and aid-wonky for the next couple of days. First up, ToCs: I’ve gone through a personal hype cycle on Theories of Change – first getting excited and extolling their virtues, and then starting to have second thoughts as I saw them turn from a tool that encourages imagination and experimentation into a […]

Read More »

Why are Illegal Drugs still a Cinderella Issue in Development? (Looking at you CGD!)

Why don’t more mainstream aid organizations work on the issue of illegal drugs like cannabis, coca or opium poppy? We’ve known for decades that the prevalent approach to these – prohibition – harms small-scale farmers that grow them, fuels violence, undermines the rule of law and contaminates politics (the UN estimates the illegal drugs trade […]

Read More »

What do 13,000 children in 46 countries have to tell us about living with COVID-19?

Guest post by Save the Children International’s Melissa Burgess and Michael O’Donnell The world is certainly not lacking in research on COVID-19. But there have been gaps in empirical data showing the lived experience of people around the world. Today, Save the Children is filling some of those gaps with the release of the findings […]

Read More »

Launching a new Research and Action programme on ‘Emergent Agency in a Time of Covid’. Want to join us?

Mutual aid groups morphing into long term citizens’ organizations; women’s organizations forming to address the surge in domestic violence during lockdown; small producers switching to producing protective equipment for health and care workers. Across the world, people are responding to the pandemic at a local level by acting, organizing and learning. What kinds of patterns […]

Read More »

Book Review: ‘Thinking and Working Politically in Development’

‘Thinking and Working Politically in Development’, by John Sidel and Jaime Faustino, is a new book on one of my favourite ‘Thinking and Working Politically’ programmes – Coalitions for Change (CfC) in the Philippines. It’s not the most user-friendly (no exec sum, no index), but at least it’s open access – download here. I’ve written […]

Read More »

London’s Toxic Tube and what to do about it

I thought I’d post some of the top blog posts from this year’s students in my LSE class on ‘Advocacy, Campaigning and Grassroots activism‘. Their individual assignment was to design a campaign strategy for a cause close to their hearts, and write a blog about it. Here’s Lucy Shearer presenting her campaign to clean up […]

Read More »

What have 5 years of tax campaigns achieved?

Guest post by Oliver Pearce In early 2016, I joined Oxfam GB to lead its tax work. As I now prepare to leave Oxfam, a lot has changed in the world of tax (and the wider world too!). Early 2016 was before the Brexit referendum, the Trump presidency, England’s men joining the women’s team by […]

Read More »

3 advocacy case studies I would love to read (on long term norm shifts). Anyone fancy writing them?

On the off chance that someone is looking for an interesting research topic, here are 3 case studies related to norm change that I would love to read about, but don’t currently have time to research myself. If you are interested in picking up any of them, I’d love to discuss (and read the result). […]

Read More »

Making COVID Social Protection Accountable to India’s Vulnerable Citizens

Suchi Pande is a scholar in residence at the Accountability Research Center, Washington DC This post discusses two development policies that sound technical, but which are really important. Social protection is the set of services that help protect people against economic shocks or disasters, and from the ups-and-downs all people face in their life-cycle. Social […]

Read More »

The evolution of Extinction Rebellion

I’m putting together my reading list for next year’s LSE course on activism and this week’s Guardian long read on Extinction Rebellion is going to be on it, even though it’s a bit UK-centric. It brilliantly pulls together a number of features of the rise of new social movements. Here are some extracts, but as […]

Read More »

What have we learned from four years’ research into empowerment and accountability in fragile/violent settings?

I’m still reeling from my first serious zoomarathon – 12 hours on zoom over 3 days (plus prep), with 50 researchers around the world from the Action for Empowerment and Accountability (A4EA) consortium. I can report back that unfortunately, my mood swings are much the same as in conferences (but with added anxiety/grumpiness from struggling […]

Read More »