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In: European Commission on Agriculture: Fifteenth conference of international organizations for the joint study of programmes and activities in the field of agriculture in Europe, Paris, France, 18-21 February 1969 Rome, FAO, pp. 3-7. ECA/10/15/69. Organization of a seminar for staff members of international non-governmental organizations. Reprinted in International Associations 21, May 1969, pp. 263-267. [PDF version] [voir version française]
The Thirteenth Conference of International Organizations for the Joint Study of Programmes and Activities in the Field of Agriculture in Europe requested the Union of International Associations to prepare a draft manual on the structure and functioning of international non-governmental organizations. The publication of such a manual had been recommemded by the Twelfth Conference.
A summary of the objectives and contents of a draft manual was prepared and submitted to nearly twenty international organizations. This note includes the major part of the draft toge ther with some conclusions based on the comments received.
a) Provide information and practical advice to aid officers and staff of non-governmen tal organizations. (NGOs) in increasing the efficiency and effectiveness of their own organization and that of their national
members; stress to be laid on problems which arise in the organizations and how to solve them.
b) Clarify the importance of an efficient opera tional link between international organiz ations and their national member organiz ations as a precondition for practical coord dinated action by NGOs. Clarify the oper ational context in which national and international NGOs function.
c) Emphasise the problems of international NGOs but show the interdependence of problems of INGOs at the national and international level.
d) Demonstrate that management techniques originated by the business community can be adapted to NGOs without destroying, the special NGO quality.
e) Promote an interest in the management problems of NGOs attempting to provide a systematic treatment of the major problems of non-profit organization operation.
f) Stress that in management and organization problems NGOs, of whatever point of view or activity, have a common interest justifying a common approach.
g) Collect together, by including appropriate texts or bibliographic references, a sample of the available material already produced on different aspects of the operational problems of NGOs.
a) The Manual would consist of a compendium of articles and original material. The texts would be obtained by selecting suitable articles for each section of the Manual from material that has already appeared in printed or stencilled form. Permission to republish the material would of course be obtained.
b) Possible sources of material are :
c) Original material would be requested or prepared for sections on which no satisfactory published material was avaible.
d) Editorial comment would be included where appropriate to link the articles in different sections.
A printed volume of some 130 pages.
Staff and officers of national and international NGOs, together with other persons interested in increasing the effectiveness of this group of organizations.
PART ONE :
Non-governmental, non-profit organizations (NGOs) - a survey :
PART TWO :
Creation of an NGO ;
PART THREE :
The environment in which an NGO operates :
PART FOUR :
PART FIVE :
Staff and human relations problems.
PART SIX :
PART SEVEN :
Financial control and reporting :
PART EIGHT :
Offices and equipment :
PART NINE :
Day to day operations of secretariat :
PART TEN :
Publications and dissemination of informmation.
PART ELEVEN :
Organization and use of meetings and their results.
PART TWELVE :
Collaboration with other NGOs.
PART THIRTEEN :
Special activities :
PART FOURTEEN :
Evaluation of organization and its programme.
PART FIFTEEN :
Major policy decisions:
PART SIXTEEN :
Dissolution of organization.
PART SEVENTEEN :
Statistics, graphs tables of NGO activity and characteristics.
PART EIGHTEEN :
The major conclusions were :
In order to prepare the manual, therefore, a certain amount of time will have to be spent scanning published journal material. (A library specializing in this area is prepared to co-operate on this phase).
The articles will then have to be grouped under the contents headings and reviewed by a panel. (A number of organizations agreed to co-operate at the review stage).
With regard to the reservations on the length of the manual, these appear to have arisen because the draft did not make clear that the manual was merely supposed to be a practical guide in note form and not a detailed original study. Some headings can possibly be covered in a few lines with references to more comprehensive studies. Basically the volume is intended as an introduction with practical suggestions to be used by persons faced with the problem of having to operate an international organization secretariat.
It is difficult to determine to what extent such a manual would be self-supporting if it was produced for sale. Clearly it would be advisable to include material applicable to national organizations and showing them the problems of international organization operation to facilitate the co-ordination of national and international programmes. This would considerably increase the potential number of organizations interested in the manual. A possible solution would be to produce the first version of the manual in stencilled form and only produce a printed version as a second edition if the demand was sufficient.
Following the recommendation of the 15th Conference that the Union of International Associations should prepare and publish this Manual as soon as possible, the UAI would like to thank any international organizations which sends :
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