Latest Blog Entries

How Good is the Data on NGO Aid Map?

Balancing the tension between providing enough, timely or high quality data is tricky – it’s often hard to do all of those things at once. Still, if data is not good enough it can’t be used, rendering transparency meaningless.

Before getting into what NGO Aid Map is doing to improve data quality, it’s worth revisiting what we mean by that. When we wrote about this topic last year, our definition of data quality had three dimensions:

Ebola Crisis: We are in this for the Long Haul

Since my letter regarding the Ebola crisis in September, 5,160 people have died with a total of 14,098 cases due to the worst Ebola outbreak in history. The actual numbers are probably far worse. Local, regional and international partners, including 30 InterAction members, are collaborating to operate Ebola Treatment Units, conduct contact and identification tracing and perform safe burials while mobilizing communities to contain the virus at its source. 

The Rohingya: Unpacking the Conflict in Myanmar

On July 9, I attended the House Committee on Foreign Affairs Hearing on spotlighting human rights in Southeast Asia. Throughout the hearing, there was one name I heard over and over: Rohingya. 

Community-Based Protection

Community-based approaches to protection (CBP) have largely been developed by NGOs in complement to the often more legalistic and state-centric work of mandated protection actors. NGOs have long worked within communities in crisis – including as implementing partners for the major UN agencies – so developing community-based protection work built on their pre-existing strength, experience and networks. Whilst there is anecdotal evidence of its success as an approach it does present some specific challenges in terms of demonstrating results.

Can the G20 pull together to end financial secrecy and curb corruption?

The world will be watching the G20 leaders in Brisbane this weekend (November 15-16) to see if they can address the world’s slow economic growth, the problem of anonymous companies and global inequality. As the host country, Australia has had the strongest voice in setting the G20 agenda, as well as in facilitating the relationships of the G20 with the business community, organized labor and civil society.

The G20 has a long history of working with the business and labor communities, and so it is appropriate that it now recognizes the importance of strengthening dialogue with civil society. The Australian government, as the president of the G20 in 2014, appointed a civil society steering committee, or “C20,” and provided limited financial support for its secretariat. This was seen as a positive move by civil society actors. Unfortunately, the Australian government delayed approving NGO access to the G20 media center until just three weeks before the summit, and then allowed only a few days for the civil society representatives to register. This process prevented many NGOs from taking part, and soured what has otherwise been a good working relationship.

Dispelling the Myth: An Evolving Relationship between NGOs and Private Businesses

A common misperception regarding NGO-private sector relations is one based on mutual distrust and occasional confrontation; or with the advent of corporate social responsibility funding, one solely based on donor-recipient transactions. With the international development landscape rapidly evolving, some historical and present-day assumptions are simply inaccurate.

The following statements are not true of operational U.S. NGOs:

1.      They are generally uncomfortable partnering with companies seeking new markets or profits

The Need to Double Food Output by 2050: GAP Report Launch

The 2014 World Food Prize, held between Oct. 15-17, would have been incomplete without the launch of yet anotherGAP Report from the Global Harvest Initiative (GHI).

Why the Global Push for Local Democratic Governance?

The current pro-democracy protest in Hong Kong is yet another example of a push for good, local, democratic governance. China’s move to limit the electoral freedom of Hong Kong might have served as an immediate cause, the protest is a reflection of the growing consensus for accountable governance. A movement that was witnessed in the Arab Spring, and currently in Ukraine and Syria.

Ebola Crisis: Working For Humanity

Just off the busy Congo Cross roundabout in Freetown, Daniel Sewah was reorganizing the contents of the four-wheel drive which carried the members of “Burial Team 7.” It was the start of another busy for those managing the safe removal and burial of bodies in Sierra Leone’s capital – although no one yet realized just how busy it will be.


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