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A non-governmental organization (NGO) is an organization that is not part of a government and was not founded by states.

NGOs are therefore typically independent of governments. Although the definition can technically include for-profit corporations, the term is generally restricted to social, cultural, legal, and environmental advocacy groups having goals that are primarily noncommercial. NGOs are usually non-profit organizations that gain at least a portion of their funding from private sources. Current usage of the term is generally associated with the United Nations and authentic NGOs are those that are so designated by the UN. Because the label "NGO" is considered too broad by some, as it might cover anything that is non-governmental, many NGOs now prefer the term private voluntary organization (PVO). A 1995 UN report on global governance estimated that there are nearly 29,000 international NGOs. National numbers are even higher: The United States has an estimated 2 million NGOs, most of them formed in the past 30 years. Russia has 65,000 NGOs. Dozens are created daily. In Kenya alone, some 240 NGOs come into existence every year. The International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement is the world's largest group of humanitarian NGO's. Though voluntary associations of citizens have existed throughout history, NGOs along the lines seen today, especially on the international level, have developed in the past two centuries. One of the first such organizations, the International Committee of the Red Cross, was founded in 1863. The phrase non-governmental organization did not come into use with the establishment of the United Nations in 1945 with provisions in Article 71 of Chapter 10 of the United Nations Charter for a consultative role for organizations that are governments nor member states – see Consultative Status. The definition of international NGO (INGO) is first given in resolution 288 (X) of ECOSOC on February 27, 1950: it is defined as 'any international organization that is not founded by an international treaty'. The vital role of NGOs and other "major groups" in sustainable development was recognized in Chapter 27 of Agenda 21, leading to revised arrangements for consultative relationship between the United Nations and non-governmental organizations.

One categorization that is frequently used is the division into relief-oriented or development-oriented organizations. NGOs have developed to emphasize humanitarian issues. acceptance and knowledge by lobbying. Operational NGOs can be community-based. [4] Types of NGOs There are numerous possibilities to classify NGOs. developmental aid and sustainable development. RINGO is an abbreviation of religious international NGO such as Catholic Relief Services. and whether they are more public or private-oriented. such as Global 2000. These include: INGO stands for international NGO. As opposed to operational project management. press work and activist events. Switzerland. Advocacy NGOs their primary purpose is to defend or promote a specific cause. In an attempt to counterbalance this trend.000 NGOs.Globalization during the 20th century gave rise to the importance of NGOs. A long list of acronyms has developed around the term 'NGO'. national or international. International treaties and international organizations such as the World Trade Organization were perceived as being too centered on the interests of capitalist enterprises. The fifth World Social Forum in Porto Alegre. in January 2005 was attended by representatives from more than 1. ENGO. such as CARE. Brazil. short for environmental NGO. Many problems could not be solved within a nation. they can also be classified according to whether they stress service delivery or participation. A prominent example of this is the World Social Forum which is a rival convention to the World Economic Forum held annually in January in Davos. BINGO is short for business-oriented international NGO. or whether they are religious and secular. Acronyms Nongovernmental organizations are an heterogeneous group. . these organizations typically try to raise awareness. The following is the typology the World Bank uses 1: Operational NGOs Their primary purpose is the design and implementation of developmentrelated projects.

there are a huge number of such organizations and their goals cover a broad range of political and philosophical positions. For instance. Now. which is independent of the federal government. However. The NGO is starting to develop from a relief NGO to a development NGO. since its membership is by nation. NGOs in the second generation are oriented towards small-scale. Korten calls the third generation 'sustainable systems development'.GONGOs are government-operated NGOs. they move away from their operational service providing role towards a catalytic role. the typical development NGO focuses on relief and welfare. 1 Purposes NGOs exist for a variety of purposes. such an NGO as Oxfam. which is actually not purely an NGO. QUANGOs are quasi-autonomous non-governmental organisations. The NGO notices immediate needs and responds to them. the United States is represented in ISO by the American National Standards Institute. Some act primarily as lobbyists. Examples are the distribution of food. . might provide needy people with the equipment and skills they need to find food and clean drinking water. However. or representing a corporate agenda. improving the welfare of the disadvantaged. such as the W3C and the International Organization for Standardization (ISO). and each nation is represented by what the ISO Council determines to be the "most broadly representative" standardization body of a nation. At this stage. NGOs try to advance changes in policies and institutions at a local. Examples include improving the state of the natural environment. Evolutionary stages of development NGOs Three stages or generations of NGO evolution have been identified by Korten’s (1990) Three Generations of Voluntary Development Action. which may have been set up by governments to look like NGOs in order to qualify for outside aid. This can also easily be applied to private schools and athletic organizations. usually to further the political or social goals of their members. other countries can be represented by national governmental agencies--this is the trend in Europe. First. Methods NGOs vary in their methods. such a body might in fact be a nongovernmental organization--for example. self-reliant local development. encouraging the observance of human rights. At this evolutionary stage. shelter or health services. while others conduct programs and activities primarily. and delivers relief services directly to beneficiaries. national and international level. NGOs build the capacities of local communities to meet their needs through 'self reliant local action'. concerned with poverty alleviation.

In 1946. As an example. only 41 NGOs had consultative status with the ECOSOC. but this number had risen to 2. Public Relations This section is a stub. founded in 1992. Project management There is an increasing awareness that management techniques are crucial to project success in non-governmental organizations. 3 Management of non-governmental organizations Two management trends are particularly relevant to NGOs: diversity management and participatory management. It is intricately tied to the concept of a learning organization: all people within the organization are perceived as sources for knowledge and skills. individuals have to be able to contribute in the decision making process and they need to learn. . You can help by adding to it. This section is a stub.Networking The International Freedom of Expression eXchange (IFEX). is a global network of more than 60 non-governmental organizations that promote and defend the right to freedom of expression. Diversity management deals with different cultures in an organization. To develop the organization. Consulting Many international NGOs have a consultative status with United Nations agencies relevant to their area of work. A participatory management style is said to be typical of NGOs. Activist events Greenpeace protest in Brasília (Brazil) in December 2004. the Third World Network has a consultative status with the UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) and the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC). You can help by adding to it. Intercultural problems are prevalent in Northern NGOs that are engaged in developmental activities in the South.350 in 2003. Personnel coming from a rich country are faced with a completely different approach of doing things in the target country.

experience and contacts. Paid staff members typically receive lower pay than in the commercial private sector. Funding such large budgets demands significant fundraising efforts on the part of most NGOs. grants from international institutions or national governments. governments. the budget of the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) was over $540 million dollars in 1999. For instance. and private donations. There is some dispute as to whether expatriates should be sent to developing countries. and companies sometimes form cooperative. However.7 million in 2003. Major sources of NGO funding include membership dues. Staffing Not all people working for non-governmental organizations are volunteers. conciliatory partnerships as well. Funding Large NGOs may have annual budgets in the millions of dollars. Even though the term 'non-governmental organization' implies independence of governments. The reasons why people volunteer are usually not purely altruistic. governments. by the end of 1995. some NGOs depend heavily on governments for their funding. CONCERN worldwide.[5] Human Rights Watch spent and received US$21. But NGOs.2 The NGO-sector is an important employer in terms of numbers. employed 174 expatriates and just over 5. but self-serving: They expect to gain skills. the expertise these employees or volunteers may have can be counterbalanced by a number of factors: the cost of foreigners is typically higher. and NGOs can be quite complex and sometimes antagonistic. A quarter of the US$162 million income in 1998 of the famine-relief . Employees are highly committed to the aims and principles of the organization. Several EU-grants provide funds accessible to NGOs.Relations The relationship among businesses. they have no grassroot connections in the country they are sent to and local expertise is often undervalued. For example. who wants to see the supported project managed by someone from an industrialized country. Frequently this type of personnel is employed to satisfy a donor. an international Northern NGO working against poverty. Some advocacy NGOs view opposition to the interests of Western governments and large corporations as central to their purpose. the sale of goods and services.000 national staff working in ten developing countries in Africa and Asia. and in Haiti.

Nobel Prize winner Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) (known in English as Doctors Without Borders) gets 46 percent of its income from government sources. Getting to the 21st century: voluntary action and the global agenda. Is expatriate staff necessary in international development NGOs? A case study of an international NGO in Uganda. 2000. D. Sarah. 11-13. An exception is theInternational Committee of the Red Cross which is considered a legal entity under international law. West Hartford. P. International Council of Voluntary Agencies. References London School of Economics International Working Paper Series on NGOs World Bank Criteria defining NGO External links   What is a Non-Governmental Organization? City University. Publication of the Centre for Civil Society at London School of Economics. 1990. 118. Note 4: Intractable Conflict Knowledge Base Project of the Conflict Research Consortium at the University of Colorado Note 5: Sins of the secular missionaries. Occasional Paper No. 3. 1987. Management Development and Development Management for Voluntary Organizations. Note 3: Campbell.5 Legal status NGOs are not legal entities under international law. Note 1: World Bank Criteria defining NGO Note 2: Mukasa. CT: Kumarian Press. because it is based on the Geneva Convention. Notes 1 Korten. p. Geneva. January 29. like states are. in: The Economist. The Christian relief and development organization World Vision US collected US$55 million worth of goods in 1998 from the American government. 2002.organization Oxfam was donated by the British government and the EU. London NGOs' role in peace-building .