+ Localisation - CID Brief
"The implications of localisation are profound touching on every aspect of an INGO’s work including the nature of partnerships, business, financial and operating models. Localisation is more than a new programme of work. It aims to fundamentally rebalance the entire humanitarian and development ecosystem."
Chris Clarke, former CEO of World Vision has produced a thought-provoking paper on the implications of localisation on NGOs, governments and local partners.
He examines various definitions of 'localisation', and their implications:
- Do local organisations affiliated to international NGOs qualify as 'local' partners?
- What's left for New Zealand based INGOs who transfer decision-making and resources to local partners?
If you think your organisation is already 'localising', chances are you're not:
"The Global Humanitarian Assistance report notes that the proportion of humanitarian assistance going directly to local and national NGOs actually decreased between 2015 and 2016, from 0.5% to 0.3%. The report notes that the addition of government and private sector funding lifts the total to 2%. This falls a long way short of the 25% figure anticipated in the Grand Bargain."
He ends with a list of thoughts and actions for INGOs to consider:
- Devolve decision making as close to the field as possible
- Support the building of capacity and capabilities in local actors
- Review your human resources policies and practices to encourage more peer to peer support between countries and organisations (even consider secondees from the Pacific).
- Build strong relationships with the local MFAT post
- Open up conversations with the Pacific diaspora in New Zealand
- Work with local and national NGOs to develop contextually appropriate, transparent and affordable monitoring and evaluation frameworks
- Invite local voices to your own decision making table
- Consider your own local practices – eg how you are engaging with and partnering with Maori and Pacifica
- Be transparent in all financial practices.