The shape of India’s non-profits in the 21st century

India’s non-governmental organizations (NGOs) have been in the midst of a brewing crisis for sometime now, which goes well beyond questions over technical competence or efficiency of delivery, to questions over their existence and their legitimacy. It is pertinent to examine the reasons for this crisis, and set out ways in which NGOs can restart …

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Why the traditional model of NGO-led development must end

My latest column for livemint, on how the space for traditional NGO-led development model is shrinking *** The 1980s and 1990s were the heydays of the NGO-led development model in India, where significant funds flowed through them into development programmes targeting the poor. NGOs played a critical role in developing model interventions of service delivery …

Preparing to ‘withdraw’

My latest livemint article is up todayRecognizing that an external agency ought to play the role of a facilitator, it is safe to say that unless an agency has a well-defined withdrawal strategy for self-reliance and sustainability, the main motive for its existence itself is endangered. An agency cannot just contemplate packing its bags when …

Lessons for the field

It is possible to make a difference to lives of people by sustained intervention at the grassroots. Keep in mind, the concept of big and small development - the big can take over the small, but don't wait for the positive big swell to take you over; and dont worry about the negative swell undoing all of your …