Globalizing Governance and Non-Profit Program Results
ActionAid’s new governance structure
According to my opinion, ActionAid’s new governance structure seems to lack effectiveness. Although the organization has taken the initiative of including all its members in the management I feel that its governance structure does not support effective and efficient delivery of programs. The AAI has adopted a vertical management structure that may seem not to work well with the beneficiaries. AAI is a non-government organization, and its main aim is to eradicate poverty in Africa (Ebrahim, & Go r d o n, 2015). Therefore, it needs more participation of the beneficiaries to ensure that it fulfills its objective. The current governance structure offers the international management more power than the members that can bring about dictatorship. The international management is mainly comprised of the affiliates who are from Southern unit; therefore the Northern unit are not offered many representations at the international level.
I also feel that the AAI’s current structure would deprive its members a chance to practice creativity. With a vertical governance structure, the members receive instructions from the top management; therefore their performance is measured by their ability to follow instructions. AAI being an NGO organization it needs members to be creative in the process of delivering their objectives (Ebrahim, & Go r d o n, 2015). I also feel that the structure adopted by AAI deprives it a chance to stay competitive. First, unlike during its creation nowadays many NGOs are being created ; therefore, there is a need for AAI to take up a structure that will make it remain relevance in the community. The top tier of AAI is much smaller than the lower level. The two-tier consist of a board that is responsible for overlooking the everyday running of the organization and the assembly that is the principal body of AAI. The Board of AAI consists of 21members while the assembly only consists of nine members. The southern unit is also more represented in both the National Assembly than the Northern group that are the principal beneficiaries.
Strengths and weaknesses of the AAI governance structure
Strengths of the AAI governance structure
Although I feel that the governance structure is not efficient it still has its strengths which include:
First is that AAI governance structure being vertical the top management allows members to give their opinions. Members of the AAI are allowed to propose motions in the Assembly therefore allowing them to contribute to running and shaping the future of the organization (Ebrahim, & Go r d o n, 2015).
Another strength of the new AAI structure is that it allows the participation of all members. For instance, during its creation organization structure was a unitary group; however, the new structure comprises of equal members who are presented in all the happenings of the organization (Ebrahim, & Go r d o n, 2015).
Strength of the governance structure is that unlike during its creation the management of the organization is with the assembly. The assembly consists of 26 members from both the Northern and the Southern unit (Ebrahim, & Go r d o n, 2015). That means that both the Northern and Southern are represented in the assembly, and therefore they are both included in the governance of the organization.
Weaknesses of the AAI governance structure
The weaknesses of the AAI governance structure include:
First the Southern unit is more represented in the assembly than the Northern unit. Therefore, during voting the southern unit has more advantage than the Northern unit (Ebrahim, & Go r d o n, 2015).
Another weakness of the AAI governance structure is that the affiliates are given more voting powers than the associates.
Another weakness of the AAI governance structure is that the top tier is much smaller than the lower tier (Ebrahim, & Go r d o n, 2015).
Another weakness of the AAI governance structure is that the international level being the major decision maker can make decisions that are against the sovereignty of the national organizations (Ebrahim, & Go r d o n, 2015). The above can cause tension in AAI especially in its governance.
Another weakness of the AAI is that due to its devolution of the powers it would have a hard time allocating resources to the poor. AAI is a non-government organization, and its main objective is to eradicate poverty in Africa; therefore it has to have a good process of allocating its resources to the poor (Ebrahim, & Go r d o n, 2015).
I would take a few steps to redesign the governance structure to be effective and advance its international agenda and also to balance power between the northern and southern unit.
First I would ensure that the affiliates have an equal membership of both the Northern units and the southern unit.
Secondly so as to ensure that there is good governance, I would redesign the governance structure from vertical to a horizontal governance structure. The horizontal governance structure would allow teamwork in the organization. For instance, every member would be geared up to fulfill the organizational goal of eradicating poverty in Africa. The horizontal governance structure would also allow the members to exercise their creativity. The members would not be more focused on following instructions, rather they would be more focused in ensuring that the organization fulfills its goals. To achieve this, I would ensure that the international level works more closely with the national structures. Therefore, they would be no need for the international level to oversee the national structures.
Ebrahim, A., & Go r d o n, R. (2013, July 10). ActionAid International: Globalizing Governance,
Localizing Accountability. Retrieved April 6, 2015.