In the absence of any of effective evolutionary pressures, the NGO world remains a pool of tadpoles.
Owen Barder isn’t too impressed by NGOs in Ethiopia, is he? His cynicism is probably well placed. Here in Tanzania too NGOs proliferate like ragwort on a derelict site. It is probably fair to say that most exist to intercept aid for the benefit of the founders and staff.
The inefficiencies in Tanzanian NGOs are encouraged by the often appalling oversight from the international NGOs that usually fund them. Like their bilateral counterparts, your typical international funding NGO’s top three priorities are disburse, disuburse and disburse again. And like their bilateral counterparts, it is a lot easier to ignore reports of misallocations and misappropriation.
It’s hard to know who to support.