Development Cooperation Handbook/Introduction
This is a reference book for for development workers on managing the design, implementation and evaluation of development cooperation actions.
- stories of projects,
- the testimony of development stakeholders on international cooperation issues and
- the knowledge resources and tools collected and distributed by development actors for the benefit of collegues and partners in a spirit of solidarity amongst international cooperation workers.
The Vrinda Project
This wikibook, along with the documentary are outputs of the Vrinda Project.
"Vrinda" (वृन्दा) in Sanskrit signifies the "harmony resulting from the choice of working together for the same objective" (from the root वृ = to choose). The Vrinda Project is a knowledge sharing action: it creates a peer-to-peer cooperative environment where development actors share their experiences, express their views and enable each other to better tackle development cooperation issues. The Vrinda Project builds on a previously implemented project called the "European Citizens working for the Global Development Agenda" (EUGAD) that received financial support from EuropeAid and was completed in June 2013.
The Kautilya Society for Intercultural Dialogue, a non government organization, based in India, has taken on the responsibility of coordinating the team of volunteers that are taking the Vrinda Project forward.
All contributions that are coherent with the Wikimedia founding principles are welcome.
Who is our audience
Target 1 - International development cooperation actors are at the same time the primary contributors and the primary target of the information and knowledge shared in TVP (The Vrinda Project). Development actors recognize that knowledge constitutes an essential resource for development and that knowledge sharing is indispensable for networking and advocacy. Nevertheless, information sharing continues to be a major challenge since many organizations consider their know-how to be a personal strategic asset for keeping a competitive advantage in fund-raising activities. The partners that help in collecting and distributing the resources of this handbook share a sense of "world citizenship", a positive-sum-game approach to inter-community relationships. For those who accept this invitation, welcome on board!
Target 2 - This knowledge sharing platform becomes an opportunity to inform the general public about what we are doing and why. Secondary target are media professional who would like to communicate to their specific audience what is the work being done in International cooperation. Here they can enter inside the real culture of development work, avoiding the noise of self justification and standard rhetoric which heavily burdens the institutional communication of International organizations and multinational charities.
This is a window on the laboratory of the development work not a showcase for fundraising or policy support: so it can be utilized by those who really want to know what is going on in the development fields.
Target 3 - Wider target is the general public of the television programs that are produced utilizing the resources collected and shared through TVP. We hope that this project will contribute to raise the awareness of the general public about the scope and challenges of international cooperation.
The knowledge resources are collected and organized prioritizing a usage by members of small development organizations, especially in developing countries, who are increasingly assuming leadership in designing and managing development cooperation actions.
At present, there is a language gap between those who do the work on the ground and those who write and evaluate projects. Most donors and sponsors ask for very elaborate documentation on all aspects of the project design and implementation methodology. This is a good thing, as it promotes professionalism and transparency. However, this also tends to alienate, from international cooperation, many sincere and charismatic social workers, that are very good in promoting inclusion of the poor and marginalized sections of society, but dislike the technicalities of “project management” and dislike the pedantry of the politically correct jargon. Some big international NGOs exploit this knowledge gap and carve a niche for themselves, acting as intermediaries between those who provide funds for cooperation projects (i.e. donors) and those who execute projects (i.e. local organizations). As local actors want to have a say in planning and evaluation, they need to learn the “project grammar” and the “project terminology”. Here is where we decided to step in. And with the contribution of "elder" experts, we want to open the way for less expert ones to take charge and become fully informed partners. So, we have tried to reduce language technicalities and at the same time enable the audience to learn specialized jargon that is used in grant applications and progress reports.
In the documentary story
- The capacity building online resource centre
- European Center for Development Policy Management
- Impact Alliance
- Capacity4Dev - The European Commission's website for Capacity Development
- Learning Network on Capacity Development - LenCD
- Capacity.org - A gateway for capacity development
Please write to our e-mail address if you'd like to send us your feedback, criticism, correction, suggestions etc. regarding this wikibook or share a resource or tool that can be linked to it.
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