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'We have to be creative': NGO financing in insecure times

Peck, Sarah G. (2016) 'We have to be creative': NGO financing in insecure times. In: First Postgraduate Conference on Caribbean In/securities and Creativity, 23 May 2016, University of Birmingham, UK. (Unpublished)

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The financial landscape for development work in the Caribbean is changing. The global recession, austerity measures and middle-income country classifications all make conventional donor driven sources of funding for development projects in the region harder for non-governmental organizations (NGOs) to access.

Based on qualitative research in Barbados and Grenada this paper explores some of the creative ways that NGOs are responding to, pre-empting and negotiating the ongoing challenge of mobilizing financial resources in this changing context. NGOs are engaging with the corporate sector, using social enterprise models of working to raise money and exploring virtual connections to maximize funding opportunities. These contemporary funding sources represent opportunities for sought after independence and autonomy from established methods of development financing, but they also present ethical dilemmas for NGOs as they engage with systems that are often ideologically distinct from their own believes and values. This paper will explore the intricacies of some of these newer fiscal practices, and examine how NGOs are negotiating these tensions in their everyday work, using crowd funding as one example. Of particular importance are the new relationships that can be created through these more novel funding sources, especially with Diaspora groups, exemplifying the connection between social networks and financial stability.

The paper concludes by asking whether these novel modes of funding create more democratic, secure and equal relations or whether they reproduce forms of insecurity and powerlessness for NGOs.

Type of Work:Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
School/Faculty:Schools (1998 to 2008) > School of Geography, Earth & Environmental Sciences
Department:Department of Geography
Date:23 May 2016
Keywords:NGO financing, development, Caribbean, Caribbean Insecurities, development projects, non-governmental organizations, qualitative research, Barbados, Grenada, Caribbean creativity, social enterprise models, ethical dilemmas, crowd funding, Diaspora groups.
Subjects:G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > G Geography (General)
H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
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Funders:Leverhulme Trust
ID Code:2181

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