Good Donorship

Even though most of the interlocution processes are carried out by local organisations and individuals because they either are part of the collective action problem themselves or understand it better, they are largely carried out with external support, especially from donors and international NGOs. The problem with external support (especially financial), however, is that it can significantly undermine local problem solving processes, which are key to long lasting institutional transformation. External support alters incentive structures, through empowering paid workers over volunteers, for instance, and then they stop contributing from a genuine spirit of togetherness.

So far, we have learnt that in order to nurture effective interlocution processes there are two areas of action where further research for guiding ‘good donorship’ is required: 

  1. Identifying potential individuals or organisations able to catalyse change in a given context, which can come from civil society, inside the state, private sector, traditional associations and others.
  2. Providing the right forms of funding and capacity development in order to avoid harming local incentives that help local problem solving and building accountability relationships. This might mean supporting actors indirectly or supporting very specific actions in the right way

These research areas require a good understanding of the broad, sub-national and project specific contextual dynamics. We are developing a methodology that uses Political Economy Analysis for doing this exploration