Topic: NGOs

List of your most disastrous campaign own goals – more please!

I’m teaching a course on activism at the LSE and one of my students, Gaia Frazao-Nery, asked me a disarmingly simple question – can you give us some examples of advocacy campaigns that have achieved the opposite of what they wanted? I was stumped, so threw myself on the mercy of twitter. So far, I […]

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What is different about how INGOs do Adaptive Management/Doing Development Differently?

Earlier this week I chaired a fascinating discussion on the findings of a new paper on an adaptive management (AM) experiment by Christian Aid Ireland (CAI). The paper really adds to our knowledge of AM/Doing Development Differently: It looks at the work of an INGO, when most formally identified AM practice and research involves big […]

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How can digital bring Millennials into International Development? A ginger session with Save the Children

‘I don’t like Save the Children’. That opening line from a guest speaker at a gathering of SCF’s global big cheeses earlier this week certainly got the room’s attention. But then the speaker was pretty extraordinary. Mariéme Jamme, whose online bio includes this para: ‘Mariéme grew up in rural Senegal, from an oligarch mother who […]

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How Does Fair Trade go from inspiring examples to Transforming Capitalism?

Erinch Sahan, an exfamer who now heads the World Fair Trade Organization network, wants to pick your brains about how to transform capitalism I think I’m sitting on a goldmine of examples that could help efforts to transform business and economies. I lead a global community of 330 real examples of alternative business models. These […]

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New improved Make Change Happen: free online course for activists goes live in March

I spent a lot of time before Christmas following and commenting on Oxfam’s new MOOC (Massive Open Online Course – keep up) on ‘Making Change Happen’. A lot of time because there were so many comments (from about 3,000 participants) and they were so interesting. Now the MOOC is coming round for its second outing, […]

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What have we learned about Empowerment and Accountability in fragile/violent places?

For the past few years I’ve been one of Oxfam’s researchers in the Action for Empowerment and Accountability programme, studying how E&A function in fragile, conflict and violence-affected settings (FCVAS) – a more exact category than ‘Fragile/Conflict States’, which recognizes that it’s not always whole countries that are fragile/violent. This week we had a brainstorm […]

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How has Oxfam’s approach to Influencing evolved over the last 75 years? New paper

Oxfam has just published a reflection on how its approach to ‘influencing’ has evolved since its foundation in 1942. Written by Ruth Mayne, Chris Stalker, Andrew Wells-Dang and Rodrigo Barahona, it’s stuffed full of enlightening case studies and should be of interest to anyone who wants to understand how INGOs developed their current interest in […]

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Twenty five years more life: the real prize for tackling inequality

Following yesterday’s post introducing Oxfam’s new Davos Report, one of its authors, Max Lawson, reflects on the links between inequality and public services like health and education Imagine having 25 years more life.  Imagine what you could do.  Twenty-five years more to spend with your children, your grandchildren. In pursuing your hopes and dreams. In […]

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Davos is here again, so it’s time for Oxfam’s new report – here’s what it says

First of two posts to mark the start of Davos. Tomorrow Max Lawson digs into the links between inequality and public services. How do you follow a series of Killer Facts that have really got people’s attention? Every year the world’s political and economic leaders gather in Davos, and in recent years, Oxfam has done […]

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How did the Randomistas get so good at influencing Policy?

I’m a critic of the degree of overselling of randomized control trials (RCTs), but there’s no denying that the randomistas have been phenomenally successful snake oil salesmen and women, persuading large chunks of Big Aid to adopt their approach to what constitutes evidence and truthiness. If you want to learn how they did it, try […]

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Book Review: Can We Know Better? by Robert Chambers

Robert Chambers is a role model – in his mid-80s, he has retained all the curiosity, humour, iconoclasm, commitment and originality that has made him a cult figure on large parts of the development circuit, North and South. His latest book, Can We Know Better?, builds on a string of publications going back to 1983 […]

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Why we finally need to face up to information fatigue in 2019 (and 3 ways to do it)

Guest post by Caroline Cassidy, a freelance communications specialist and associate for ODI and On Think Tanks 2018 was an intense year. On a personal level, I moved countries and became freelance, so that probably has a lot to do with it. But I don’t think it was simply that. Recently, every year seems to […]

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