Archive for the 'Global Trends' Category

Are We Readying Ourselves for Significant Change?

Written on October 24, 2012 at 8:05 am

It strikes me that we are going through some of the significant change in civil society since I entered the profession 30 years ago .  In the past few years we are beginning to see a conversation emerge that has outlined some of these evolving trends.  They include:

  • New international configurations and players (BRICs – Brazil, Russia, India, China) and beyond – Indonesia, South Africa, Vietnam, Mexico, Turkey and Argentina).
  • Increased focus on accountability and outcomes
  • Virtual connectedness
  • Changing demographics – the baby boomers who took NGOs and their support organizations to a new level are now feeling the influence

CIVICUS Assembly 2012

Written on September 7, 2012 at 7:20 am

I have again returned to the CIVICUS World Assembly this year after having last attended in 2010.  Here is my blog post from that session.  Many of the themes this year are similar, with what seems like a greater sense of urgency that we need to do things differently.  Some of the major themes that have been discussed:

  • The global challenges we face call for dramatic change in the way civil society operates. We can’t just keep working in the same way we have in the past, feeling good about just getting incrementally better.  Kumi Naidoo, former executive director of

The Guiding and Nurturing of Governance

Written on July 24, 2012 at 6:34 am

A task force that the Berlin Civil Society Center has working on ‘new models’ for international NGOs has me thinking about governance reviews.  Having been involved with quite a number of governance reviews over the years, from national to international organizations, in small to large ones, I know that these reviews have a lot of ‘moving parts’, with larger organizations having even more moving parts and stakeholders to include.

What are some of the steps I have found most helpful to ensure that these efforts aren’t just ‘another exercise’ that does not use people’s limited time well?  Consider some of …


Co-creating a new type of organization

Written on July 3, 2012 at 7:52 am

How we conceive of organizations is changing.  What we have come to know as NGOs, nonprofits, charities and civil society organizations are being re-envisioned  as concepts like social enterprise have challenged the traditional silos and new hybrid structures are being created.

For the past year I’ve been working with a group we are calling Ci2iGlobal.  We are using CI2iGlobal as a laboratory for many things including experimenting with developing it as a ‘new organization’.  Here are some of the structural and operational concepts we’ve been exploring with that I believe will be increasingly important to all organizations to at least …


New Beginnings?

Written on January 3, 2012 at 11:49 pm

The beginning of January is a time for reflections and can be a chance for new beginnings:  personally, professionally and as world citizens.  As this “New Year’s Time” piece notes the first of January is one day that is widely shared globally and brings us all together in a common observance  to ‘make of it whatever we choose to’.

The new year gives us a chance to balance continuity and change (what’s working, and what do we need to do differently?); and vision with reality and pragmatism (how many resolutions should I really strive for this year?).

It also provides …