Why Development NGOs in the North Work with the Poor in their Own Communities: Does Everyone Matter ?

PhD Thesis


Pickering-Saqqa, S. 2015. Why Development NGOs in the North Work with the Poor in their Own Communities: Does Everyone Matter ? PhD Thesis University of East London Social Sciences
AuthorsPickering-Saqqa, S.
TypePhD Thesis
Abstract

This research seeks to understand how, why and with what implications development NGOs based in the global ‘North’ (NDNGOs) establish and maintain domestic poverty programmes, working with poor communities in their own countries.

This is an under-researched dimension of NDNGO work. There is considerable empirical work analysing the work of NDNGOs in the global ‘South’, particularly assessing their impact on poverty alleviation. However, research into their work with their domestic communities is scarce. There are also a number of critiques of NDNGOs, which highlight the need for them to re-think their future roles, but little research or empirical data to evaluate how they have responded to these challenges. This study situates itself in debates about the future role of NDNGOs, development ethics, theories of poverty and institutional practice, exploring the hypothesis that these issues may be the drivers of the domestic programmes.

Using semi-structured interviews (UK and India), archive and corporate material from four case study NDNGOs (Oxfam GB, Islamic Relief UK, Save the Children, Denmark and Oxfam America), the study takes a perspectivist qualitative approach to data collection and analysis. It makes use of AtlasTi software for data coding, informed by Bourdieu’s concepts of habitus, domains and doxa and Gaventa’s model of three- dimensional power.

Findings highlight the utility of the initial hypothesis as a heuristic device for understanding domestic programmes. This has potential application for scholars and practitioners in the analysis of other NDNGO programmatic decisions. The study also indicates a disruption in the notion of what ‘development’ is, moving away from the binaries of ‘them and us’, ‘here and there’, ‘developed and developing’ into a development ethic that affirms that everyone matters, where ever they live. The research contributes to the literature examining the nature of development in an increasingly interdependent world in which geographical and disciplinary boundaries are increasingly blurred

Year2015
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)doi:10.15123/PUB.4422
Publication dates
PrintMar 2015
Publication process dates
Deposited17 Sep 2015
Publisher's version
License
CC BY-NC-ND
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https://repository.uel.ac.uk/item/85709

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