Nongovernmental Organization ((TOP))
A non-governmental organization (NGO) or non-governmental organisation (see spelling differences) is an organization that generally is formed independent from government. They are typically nonprofit entities, and many of them are active in humanitarianism or the social sciences; they can also include clubs and associations that provide services to their members and others. Surveys indicate that NGOs have a high degree of public trust, which can make them a useful proxy for the concerns of society and stakeholders. However, NGOs can also be lobby groups for corporations, such as the World Economic Forum. NGOs are distinguished from international and intergovernmental organizations (IOs) in that the latter are more directly involved with sovereign states and their governments.
NGOs act as implementers, catalysts, and partners. They mobilize resources to provide goods and services to people who have been affected by a natural disaster; they drive change, and partner with other organizations to tackle problems and address human needs.
NGOs vary by method; some are primarily advocacy groups, and others conduct programs and activities. Oxfam, concerned with poverty alleviation, may provide needy people with the equipment and skills to obtain food and drinking water; the Forum for Fact-finding Documentation and Advocacy (FFDA) helps provide legal assistance to victims of human-rights abuses. The Afghanistan Information Management Services provide specialized technical products and services to support development activities implemented on the ground by other organizations. Management techniques are crucial to project success.
NGOs may also conduct both activities: operational NGOs will use campaigning techniques if they face issues in the field, which could be remedied by policy change, and campaigning NGOs (such as human-rights organizations) often have programs which assist individual victims for whom they are trying to advocate.
Operational NGOs seek to "achieve small-scale change directly through projects", mobilizing financial resources, materials, and volunteers to create local programs. They hold large-scale fundraising events and may apply to governments and organizations for grants or contracts to raise money for projects. Operational NGOs often have a hierarchical structure; their headquarters are staffed by professionals who plan projects, create budgets, keep accounts, and report to and communicate with operational fieldworkers on projects. They are most often associated with the delivery of services or environmental issues, emergency relief, and public welfare. Operational NGOs may be subdivided into relief or development organizations, service-delivery or participatory, religious or secular, and public or private. Although operational NGOs may be community-based, many are national or international. The defining activity of an operational NGO is the implementation of projects.
On average, employees in NGOs earn 11-12% less compared to employees of for-profit organizations and government workers with the same number of qualifications . However, in many cases NGOs employees receive more fringe benefits.
Funding sources include membership dues, the sale of goods and services, grants from international institutions or national governments, CSR Funds and private donations. Although the term "non-governmental organization" implies independence from governments, many NGOs depend on government funding; one-fourth of Oxfam's US$162 million 1998 income was donated by the British government and the EU, and World Vision United States collected $55 million worth of goods in 1998 from the American government. Several EU grants provide funds accessible to NGOs.
Government funding of NGOs is controversial, since "the whole point of humanitarian intervention was precise that NGOs and civil society had both a right and an obligation to respond with acts of aid and solidarity to people in need or being subjected to repression or want by the forces that controlled them, whatever the governments concerned might think about the matter." Some NGOs, such as Greenpeace, do not accept funding from governments or intergovernmental organizations. The 1999 budget of the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) was over $540 million.
A sole focus on overhead, however, can be counterproductive. Research published by the Urban Institute and Stanford University's Center for Social Innovation have shown that rating agencies create incentives for NGOs to lower (and hide) overhead costs, which may reduce organizational effectiveness by starving organizations of infrastructure to deliver services. An alternative rating system would provide, in addition to financial data, a qualitative evaluation of an organization's transparency and governance:
The term became popular with the 1945 founding of the United Nations in 1945; Article 71 in Chapter X of its charter stipulated consultative status for organizations which are neither governments nor member states. An international NGO was first defined in resolution 288 (X) of the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) on February 27, 1950, as "any international organization that is not founded by an international treaty". The role of NGOs and other "major groups" in sustainable development was recognized in Chapter 27 of Agenda 21. The rise and fall of international NGOs matches contemporary events, waxing in periods of growth and waning in times of crisis. The United Nations gave non-governmental organizations observer status at its assemblies and some meetings. According to the UN, an NGO is a private, not-for-profit organization which is independent of government control and is not merely an opposition political party.
Twentieth-century globalization increased the importance of NGOs. International treaties and organizations, such as the World Trade Organization, focused on capitalist interests. To counterbalance this trend, NGOs emphasize humanitarian issues, development aid, and sustainable development. An example is the World Social Forum, a rival convention of the World Economic Forum held each January in Davos, Switzerland. The fifth World Social Forum, in Porto Alegre, Brazil in January 2005, was attended by representatives of over 1,000 NGOs. The 1992 Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro, attended by about 2,400 representatives, was the first to demonstrate the power of international NGOs in environmental issues and sustainable development. Transnational NGO networking has become extensive.
In the context of NGOs (Non-Governmental Organizations), diplomacy refers to the practice of building and maintaining partnerships with other organizations, stakeholders, and governments to achieve common objectives related to social or environmental issues.
Effective NGO diplomacy involves building trust, fostering dialogue, and promoting transparency and accountability. NGOs may engage in diplomacy through various means, including advocacy, lobbying, partnerships, and negotiations. By working collaboratively with other organizations and stakeholders, NGOs can achieve greater impact and reach their goals more effectively.
They have been questioned as "too much of a good thing". Eric Werker and Faisal Ahmed made three critiques of NGOs in developing nations. Too many NGOs in a nation (particularly one ruled by a warlord) reduces an NGO's influence, since it can easily be replaced by another NGO. Resource allocation and outsourcing to local organizations in international-development projects incurs expenses for an NGO, lessening the resources and money available to the intended beneficiaries. NGO missions tend to be paternalistic, as well as expensive.
Civil society in the United States encompasses a broad range of organizations that allow individuals to achieve their social, economic, and political aspirations by organizing themselves, unhindered, according to their own interests, needs, and priorities. We are committed to the idea that the public interest is served best when private citizens and members of civil society are able to choose freely the aims, organizations, and causes they support.
Accordingly, U.S. regulations that impact civil society organizations are designed to facilitate and support the formation of non-governmental organizations (NGOs). U.S. regulations are designed, specifically, to avoid making judgments about the value or work of any given NGO. U.S. and international NGOs represent virtually every conceivable ideology, political cause, religion, social issue, and interest group. Some are deeply engaged in the political process; others are nonpartisan, operate far from the political process, and are involved only in social issues. The following overview explains how NGOs operate in the United States, and how they are regulated.
Civil society is the collection of social organizations, formed voluntarily by citizens to advance shared goals or interests. This includes independent public policy research organizations, advocacy organizations, organizations that defend human rights and promote democracy, humanitarian organizations, private foundations and funds, charitable trusts, societies, associations and non-profit corporations. It does not include political parties.
Registration requirements, and forms of organizations, vary from state to state, but are generally very simple, so that anyone can incorporate an NGO in just few days at the state level. The process typically involves providing a short description of the organization, its mission, name, the address of an agent within the state, and paying a modest fee. Most states have a general incorporation statute that makes this process a routing matter, not subject to approval by the legislature or any other government official. This approach removes the risk that a government official might abuse his or her power in determining which organizations should be allowed to exist or not. In several states, certain NGOs formed for religious, educational and other charitable purposes must also register with a state charity official charged with protecting charitable assets and regulating the charitable solicitation of funds from the public. 041b061a72