Mobile phone and social media interventions for youth development outcomes

Young people are often ‘first adopters’ of new technologies, particularly broadcast technologies such as mobile phones. The upsurge in ICT usage has had a direct impact on increasing civic engagement among youth, providing new avenues through which they are informed, shape opinions, organise, collaborate and take action. A number of barriers and challenges remain that must ...» more

An evaluation of Hogaan iyo Nabad: A community driven governance programme in Somalia/Somaliland

Jutta Bakonyi, Gidon Cohen, and Pierre-Olivier Bedard

The report presents the results of an evaluation of Hogaan iyo Nabad, a Community Driven Reconstruction (CDR) programme in Somaliland and Somalia.The programme was funded by DFID and implemented by CARE, DRC and IRC, and aimed at strengthening local governance in rural and rather remote districts in Somaliland (Erigabo) and Puntland (Galkayo and Burtinle). To work towards ...» more

Getting good at disruption in an uncertain world

Lila Buckley and Halina Ward

What does ‘disruptive change’ mean to NGO leaders and highly experienced development practitioners in middle- and low- income countries? This working paper summarises insights into how NGOs in the global South are addressing disruption in their external and internal operating environments. Beyond natural disasters, emerging technologies, political shifts and climate change the ...» more

Media, discussion and attitudes in fragile contexts

Chris Snow and Will Taylor

What is the relationship between media programming, political discussion and conflict-related attitudes? This paper tests the hypothesis that balanced and inclusive media-induced discussion can be a positive force in mitigating attitudes associated with conflict. It explores how discussions programmes – where a diverse audience, representing the whole of society, is engaged in ...» more

Do citizens reward good service? Voter responses to basic service provision in southern Africa

Daniel de Kadt and Evan S. Lieberman

This study tests the accountability hypothesis that dramatic improvements in key basic infrastructural service areas – water provision, sewerage, and refuse collection – lead to increased electoral returns to the incumbent. The findings from four Southern African countries reveals a negative relationship between change in service provision and change in incumbent vote share, ...» more

Towards more people-centric peace operations: From ‘extension of state authority’ to ‘strengthening inclusive state-society relations’

Cedric de Coning, John Karlsrud and Paul Troost

Periods of conflict erode trust between national and local authorities and the people they govern, a trust that needs to be re-established. As peace operations are undertaken by inter-governmental bodies that tend to be inherently state-centric, however, peace operations need to go beyond merely supporting the extension of state-authority and strengthen inclusive state-society ...» more

NIMD Country Programme evaluation

Laure-Hélène Piron

The Netherlands Institute for Multiparty Democracy commissioned an institutional evaluation of the period 2011–2014, with a focus on three country programmes (Georgia, Guatemala and Mali). The first objective of the evaluation was to assess the extent to which NIMD achieved results in the period 2011–2014. The second objective was to assess the extent to which the NIMD ...» more

Striking for engagement: State-citizen relations in peacebuilding in Sierra-Leone

International Alert

Despite a clear emphasis on improving state-citizen relations in the Lome Peace Agreement and post-war peace-building agenda, challenges in Sierra Leone's state-citizen relations remain. The report analyses the scope and opportunities for citizens to influence government actions; the extent to which citizens take these opportunities and why; and the outcomes and impacts of such ...» more

Making development work: The quality of government approach

Bo Rothstein & Marcus Tannenberg

This report synthesizes the current knowledge on why some countries have developed into prosperous societies while others have not, and puts forward conclusions for development policy. The report summarises qualitative as well as quantitative studies that have shown that quality of governance (QoG) factors, such as control of corruption, the rule of law, and administrative ...» more

Inclusive institutions

The term ‘inclusive institutions’ does not refer to a clearly defined field of theory or policy within international development, but to a normative sensibility that stands in favour of inclusion as the benchmark against which institutions can be judged and also promoted. Inclusive institutions are usually portrayed as both a means through which inclusive development…» more

Speculating on crisis: the progressive disintegration of the Central African Republic’s political economy

Lotje de Vries & Tim Glawion

What factors shape the Central African Republic's volatile present? This report explores the political and economic foundations that underpin the country’s progressive disintegration. It analyses the interlinking factors that have deepened historic divisions, stimulated armed groups and failed to adequately address the countries' continued instability. It calls for strategic ...» more

Inclusive transitions framework

Seth Kaplan & Mark Freeman

Transitions are the critical moments where fragile states can transform their social and political dynamics by pursuing more inclusive and cohesive practices. This publication argues that an inclusive approach offers the only realistic way to transform the relationships, institutions and dynamics that have troubled these countries. It draws on past experiences of ...» more

Effectiveness of UK civil society sector in building support for international development

A priority for the development community in donor countries is improving understanding of public attitudes towards international development and support for aid. UK civil society organisations (CSOs) have used a variety of strategies to build support for development. Available evidence on their effectiveness suggests some success in short-term popular mobilisation national and ...» more

State of the world’s volunteerism report 2015

UN Volunteers

Volunteerism provides a key channel for the successful implementation of a more inclusive future development agenda advocated by the SDGs. The report analyses the relationship between volunteerism and governance and some of the core governance issues amenable to volunteer action locally, nationally and globally. It argues that volunteerism is an additional resource and vehicle ...» more

CSOs holding governments to account

This report summarises interventions by more than 30 civil society organisations (CSOs) to increase government accountability in varied sectors and contexts. CSOs use a wide variety of different media to gather information from citizens, which they then use to press for accountability. Their strategies and tactics for engaging with local and national government ...» more

Social development and human development

This Topic Guide aims to answer the question ‘What is the interaction between social development issues and human development outcomes?’ An individual’s right to lead a long and healthy life, to be educated and to enjoy a decent standard of living cannot be realised without addressing social development issues. This is because these issues determine individuals’ access to ...» more

Governance and inequality: Benchmarking and interpreting South Africa’s evolving political settlement

Brian Levy; Alan Hirsch; & Ingrid Woolard

Has South Africa’s political settlement provided a constructive platform for successfully addressing the country’s deep-seated economic challenges in an inclusive way? This paper argues that the country’s stark inequality is a major cause of the increased pressure on maintaining its political settlement. It re-examines the foundations of South Africa’s democracy in an attempt ...» more

Political settlements and the politics of inclusion

Alina Rocha Menocal

What are political settlements and why are they now at the centre of donor efforts to foster more peaceful and effective states and societies? This paper draws on academic and grey literature to examine political settlements and processes of state formation and political, social and economic transformation. Analysing available research, the paper finds that, at least in the ...» more

State-citizen relations in North Africa since 2011

There is a limited evidence base on the changes after the Arab uprisings. A great deal of literature focuses on democratisation. Literature from the first few years after 2011 tends to be optimistic about potential change, while the later literature often notes reversals or unfulfilled opportunities. Key findings include: The expected democratic changes have largely not ...» more