Topic: Politics

Defending civic space during and after the pandemic

Guest post by Thomas Carothers, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace Multiple studies of the effects of the pandemic on civil society, including a major IDS report released last week, paint a discouraging picture. Civil society has come under assault from many directions at once, including executive overreach, securitisation of public life, the constriction of online […]

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2021 State of Civil Society Report – a great new summary

Civicus publishes its annual ‘State of Civil Society Report’ today. It’s great, with a v cool website and the report is beautifully written too (thanks for that – I have to read a lot of plodding devspeak, so it makes a real difference!). I recommend the overview if you’re looking for a succinct, accessible summary […]

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The UK aid cuts have been a political & human train wreck so far, but that could/should change

What is going on with the cuts to the UK’s aid budget? Judging from first impressions, the axe is being arbitrarily taken to a lot of really good aid programmes, with no overall plan or rationale. Surely that must be wrong – this is a £10 billion budget we’re talking about, even after the cuts. […]

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What is happening in Colombia? New roots and familiar responses to national protests

One of my LSE activism students asked if she could highlight the horrible response to popular protests currently going on in her native Colombia. Guest post by Daniela Duran  and Lorenzo Uribe   Colombia is entering its third week of protests and, although a lot of what is happening is new to the country, the […]

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How did research on Chiefs’ Courts in South Sudan influence famine early warning systems?

This is an edit of a post that went up on the LSE Africa blog earlier this week I’ve been having a fascinating time recently looking at the real world impact of some of the research by the LSE’s Centre for Public Authority and International Development and exploring some of the factors which help achieve that […]

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How to do Adaptive Management in 15 easy steps – from a top new toolkit

Yesterday I summarized the thinking behind an important new toolkit on adaptive management. In this second post, I want to have a look at the tools themselves. These come in the form of 15 ‘guidance notes’. The 15 notes cover the 3 elements of Adaptive Management that Angela Christie and I identified a couple of […]

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A top Toolkit on Adaptive Management. But is that a good idea?

In recent years, I’ve been one of a crowd of people thinking and pontificating about ‘adaptive management’. The debate has been rather dominated by academics and thinktankers, fond of hand-waving generalizations and rather better at taking down the bad stuff that suggesting what might replace it. In those conversations, Graham Teskey has played the role […]

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Does Local Advocacy look different in Fragile/Conflict affected places? Summary of new ebook

Continuing on the theme of how aid agencies can work better in fragile and conflict affected settings (FCAS), there’s a new e-book (Advocacy in Context) looking at the work of national NGOs in South Sudan, Nigeria, Burundi, Central African Republic and Afghanistan. The researchers, Margit van Wessel, Wenny Ho, Edwige Marty and Peter Tamas, talked […]

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Beyond political will – how leadership makes a difference on water and sanitation

Guest post by water policy consultant Henry Northover (twitter: @Henrynorthover) I’ve sat through too many presentations in the water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) sector that end with the neat conclusion: “all that’s needed is greater political will”.  Thank you and goodnight!  And this comes from a sector that’s pretty well-served by high level statements of […]

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Programming in Chaos. Why I think we’ve been getting it wrong.

I’ve been bouncing some ideas around with Irene Guijt on how aid agencies can/should work in what we call ‘fragile and conflict-affected settings’ (FCAS). This matters because FCAS are where a lot of the aid business (both donors and INGOs) will end up, as more stable countries grow their way out of aid dependence (and […]

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