By Marina Ottaway, Thomas Carothers
In fresh years the us and plenty of different overseas donors have embraced civil society relief as a key device of democracy merchandising. They help millions of NGOs around the globe within the identify of civil society improvement, making an investment in those corporations excessive hopes for fostering democratic participation and values. investment advantage: Civil Society reduction and Democracy promoting significantly examines this burgeoning box. a various, uncommon choice of democracy specialists and civil society practitioners from either donor and recipient nations research civil society reduction in 5 areas, together with kingdom case reviews of South Africa, the Philippines, Peru, Egypt, and Romania. The authors concentrate on an important concerns and dilemmas, akin to the connection among donor conceptions of civil society and native realities, the consequences of civil society courses, and the way relief will be better. The book's wide geographic achieve, useful concentration, and analytic rigor make it a useful advisor to this very important new quarter of foreign affairs.
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Additional info for Funding Virtue: Civil Society Aid and Democracy Promotion
Notwithstanding the dominant interpretation in the West, the Islamic identity of most of these associations has few political implications. 4 Nor would it be easy to rally Egyptians around the idea of establishing an Islamic state. It is true that most Egyptians (excluding the 10 percent who are Copts) have a strong Islamic identity and follow Islamic traditions faithfully—witness the huge number that observe Ramadan. At the same time, however, Egyptians are secular in many ways. One can compare them with Catholics who observe the main holidays but do not follow many of the other prescriptions of Catholicism and above all have no desire to establish a Catholic state.
5 Among other things, the government is highly sensitive to the foreign funding of civil society organizations and seeks to curb it. In the winter of 1998– 99 the issue again came to the fore with the arrest of the secretary-general of the Egyptian Organization for Human Rights on charges that his group had received financing from the British Parliament for a report on human rights abuses against Copts and Muslims. He, his organization, and the British government were accused of stirring up religious strife and damaging Egypt’s image abroad.
In the N G O sector, the N G O Service Center in Egypt is the leading recipient of U S A I D funds, having taken in around $40 million. The center aims to help civil society organizations to better represent and articulate the needs of their constituencies. It offers business center facilities and staff support and, most important, a place to network and exchange information; eventually it will award grants. But the center reveals the limits of U S A I D assistance to civil society in Egypt. First, it shows the agency’s preference for large projects and its reluctance to directly support N G O s .
Funding Virtue: Civil Society Aid and Democracy Promotion by Marina Ottaway, Thomas Carothers