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Role of Civil Society / NGOs+ in Rural Development. 87 th Foundation Course for Central Civil Services, IES, ISS, and IFS Officer Trainees. Dr . MCR HRD Institute of AP 2 nd November 2012. Dr. N. Sai Bhaskar Reddy, CEO, GEO The Drivers of Change . Civil Society.

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Role of civil society ngos in rural development

Role of Civil Society / NGOs+ in Rural Development

87th Foundation Course for Central Civil Services, IES, ISS, and IFS Officer Trainees

Dr. MCR HRD Institute of AP

2nd November 2012

Dr. N. Sai Bhaskar Reddy,


Role of civil society

The Drivers of Change ..

Civil society

Civil Society

"the arena, outside of the family, the state, and the market where people associate to advance common interests."

Spirit know act


Role of civil society




Don’t forget to sweep the corners

In the history

In the History

During the second half of the 19th century, nationalist consciousness spread across India and self-help emerged as the primary focus of sociopolitical movements.

Role of civil society

Numerous organizations were established during this period, including the

  • Friend-in-Need Society (1858), Prathana Samaj (1864),

  • Satya Shodhan Samaj (1873),

  • AryaSamaj (1875),

  • the National Council for Women in India (1875), and

  • the Indian National Conference (1887).

Types of organisations

Types of Organisations

  • trade unions,

  • self-help groups, 

  • social movements,

  • business associations,

  • Coalitions advocacy groups.

  • Indigenous people’s organizations,

  • Academeic

  • Registered charities,

  • development non-governmental organizations,

  • community groups,

  • women's organizations,

  • faith-based, religious and spiritual organizations,

  • professional associations, 

Defining non governmental organisations

Defining Non-Governmental Organisations

One survey found 48 different terms and acronyms. Here is a sample:

Role of civil society

ENGOs Environmental NGOs

GONGOs Government Organized NGOs

IPOsIndigenous Peoples Organizations

GROsGrassroots Organizations

GSCOsGlobal Social Change Organizations

NPOsNonprofit Organizations

VOsVoluntary Organizations

Role of civil society

In short, there is no agreed terminology for describing the NGO sector.

NGOs are not:

Role of civil society


By definition, it is an organization that is not directly related to government. The World Health Organization first made the term NGO popular back in 1945.

There are more than 50,000 international INGO’s.

In the United States there are over 2 million NGO’s

1-2 million in India. There is a marked increase in the numbers of NGO organizations worldwide.

Ngos voluntary service

NGOs / Voluntary Service

Though the term NGO became popular in India only in the 1980s, the voluntary sector has an older tradition.

Since independence from the British in 1947, the voluntary sector had a lot of respect in the minds of people - first, because the father of the nation Mahatma Gandhi was an active participant; and second because India has always had the tradition of honouring those who have made some sacrifice to help others.

Voluntary organizations gandhiji

Voluntary Organizations - Gandhiji

In independent India, the initial role played by the voluntary organizations started by Gandhi and his disciples was to fill in the gaps left by the government in the development process. The volunteers organized handloom weaversin villages to form cooperatives through which they could market their products directly in the cities, and thus get a better price.



Traditional development NGOs, who went into a village or a group of villages and ran literacy programmes, crËchesfor children and clinics, encouraged farmers to experiment with new crops and livestock breeds that would bring more money, helped the weavers and other village artisans market their products and so on

Research advocacy legal

Research / Advocacy / Legal

The second group of NGOs were those who researched a particular subject in depth, and then lobbied with the government or with industry or petitioned the courts for improvements in the lives of the citizens, as far as that particular subject was concerned.




In the third group were those volunteers who saw themselves more as activists than other NGOs did. They petitioned the bureaucrats, they alerted the media whenever they found something wrong and so on. Eg: NBA

Ngos civil society or major groups

NGOs, civil society, or major groups?

“Major Groups” is a term that was introduced in Agenda 21, agreed by governments at the Rio Earth Summit. It describes nine sectors of society identified as having a significant role in sustainable development:

  • women

  • children and youth

  • indigenous people

  • NGOs

  • Local authorities

  • Workers and trade unions

  • business and industry

  • the scientific and technical community

  • farmers

Stakeholders yet another term

Stakeholders: Yet another term!


Those who have an interest in a particular decision, either as individuals or representatives of a group. This includes people who influence a decision, or can influence it, as well as those affected by it.

Role of civil society

Advantages of NGOs

  • Less pressure from change in politics

  • Small scale projects

    • More community involvement

    • Can be individually tailored to meet specific community needs

    • Higher “success” rate

    • Less bureaucratic

  • A more “human” face

Disadvantages of ngos

Disadvantages of NGOs

  • Constant funding difficulties

  • Possible lack of legitimacy

  • Difficult to regulate

    • Can lack transparency and accountability

  • Can be ineffective due to lack of coordination

Development organization inter relationship

Development OrganizationInter-relationship

Specific Project / Issue

Ngos in intergovernmental processes

NGOs in Intergovernmental Processes

4 important functions:

  • Setting agendas

  • Negotiating outcomes

  • Conferring legitimacy

  • Implementing solutions

Ngos in india

NGOs in India

The PRIA survey reveals that

26.5% of NGOs are engaged in religious activities

21.3% work in the area of community and/or social service.

About one in five NGOs works in education

7.9% are active in the fields of sports and culture.

6.6% work in the health sector.

Role of civil society

NGOs are also the source and centre of social justice to the marginalised members of society in developing countries or failed states. 


Role of civil society

With the retreat of the state and the growing power of corporations, NGOs are shifting their attention away from governments and towards big business…


Role of ngos in un

Role of NGOs in UN

  • CBD Alliance, MOP6 / COP11, CBD 2012

    • Setting agendas

    • Negotiating outcomes (by proposing alternative language and solutions)

    • Conferring legitimacy

    • Implementing solutions

    • Sometimes, a choice has to be made about working ‘inside’ or ‘outside’ official processes. Both have pro’s and con’s, and the decision needs to be taken carefully.

Role of civil society

“Look to the Future. Accept the Challenges. Society fails if the citizen is not engaged.

“Setting an agenda for change is not a burden. It’s a responsibility. And an opportunity to change for good”

Role of civil society

Thank You…

Ref: http://www..............

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