9 Key Functions of an Effective Board

The Board of Directors sets the tone and direction of an organization, thus effective board leadership and governance is critical in helping to ensure that a civil society organization can operate to its fullest capacity. Creating an effective board is a continual process that includes recruitment, engagement and development, as well as striking a balance between providing oversight and support to the organization’s leadership.

Read More
Revitalizing civil society support in the face of crisis and opportunity

Civil society organizations are under assault around the world. As recently described in The Guardian and by networks such as CIVICUS, the past several years have witnessed a surge in government efforts to restrict local organizations’ ability to operate or access external funds. At the same time, development aid often exacerbates constraints placed on civil society organizations by favoring short-term, restricted funding, curtailing investment in salaries and overheads, and imposing onerous reporting requirements.

Read More
LeadershipJessie Davie
Hedgehog Strategy

We find that outstanding organizations, focused on results and achieving large-scale impact, also tend to be hedgehogs. A focus on solving a particular problem, and refining a specific methodology that produces consistent results, is in line with the ‘hedgehog concept.’ This kind of focus characterizes an organization like Lion Guardians, with its rigorous approach to resolving conflicts between people and lions, or Mpingo Conservation and Development Initiative, which its replicable methods for community forest management.

Read More
StrategyJessie Davie
Six Tips for Effective Communications

From fundraising to advocacy, communications has the potential to enhance the growth and performance of an organization (this recent article explains how). Yet, communications is a chronically underinvested area within an organization, especially with small to medium sized organizations working in the natural resource sector in Africa. Therefore, it’s not surprising that many of the organizations Maliasili Initiatives’ works with identify communications as one of their weakest areas and one where they see our support as having the potential to lead to significant change for them as an organization.

Read More
CommunicationsJessie Davie
The Sustainable Development Goals need Strong Organizations

This is an exciting and daunting week for the world. For three days global leaders, pop stars, development experts, and citizen activists will convene in New York City with the ambitious goal of setting an agenda to end poverty, empower women, feed the hungry, and protect the environment – among others. This short (3 minute) video by IIED provides a clear and succinct overview of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs):

Read More
StrategyJessie Davie