Mercy Corps' Governance Approach video provides a general explanation of the Mercy Corps governance approach, including basic concepts and the framework on which it is based. It lays out the theory of change and provides further insights on our strategy and tactics for the promotion of good governance. The videos are available with French, Spanish, Arabic and Myanmar language subtitles.
To support communities grappling with world’s most complex, interconnected and intensifying problems—from protracted conflict and famine to failed markets and climate change—Mercy Corps believes we must tackle the governance barriers that underpin these challenges. Weak governance is one of the biggest roadblocks to effective, lasting development in the transitioning and fragile environments where we work. It compounds natural resource degradation, inhibits economic growth, perpetuates gender inequalities, alienates youth and ignites conflict, among other impacts. In these contexts, governance institutions often lack the incentives, capacity and budgets to provide communities with the services foundational to sustainable and equitable development. Citizens lack access to basic information about their rights and responsibilities, and ineffective accountability and transparency mechanisms exacerbate grievances, encourage corruption and foster disengagement and distrust in decision-making processes.
Increasing evidence links good governance to successful peace and development outcomes, and at a time when there are limited resources available to help the world’s poorest and most vulnerable, it is essential that we renew our efforts to promote good governance.
With these challenges in mind, Mercy Corps’ good governance approach focuses on advancing four outcomes:
- We empower and engage citizens by informing and mobilizing communities, and promoting citizen participation in governance processes;
- We enhance the capacity, networks and inclusivity of local organizations to support a skilled and connected civil society;
- We strengthen accountability mechanisms and support governance institutions in meaningfully engaging citizens to promote more responsive and accountable decision-makers; and
- We strengthen relationship building, constructive deliberation and increased trust by facilitating frequent and repeated interaction between diverse communities and sectors to address public challenges.
By elevating the voices of vulnerable communities and increasing their inclusion in decision-making, while simultaneously promoting responsiveness and accountability from governance institutions, we ensure governance processes are more equitable and effective. This approach creates a foundation for communities and institutions to tackle the underlying causes of the world’s toughest challenges, working collaboratively to build secure, productive and just communities.
All stories about Good Governance
Iraq: Beyond Humanitarian Relief: Strengthening the Foundation for a More Stable Iraq
This policy brief outlines the need for for a holistic approach to assistance in Iraq that addresses needs throughout the country through work with grassroots organizations and local stakeholders to move toward citizen-government engagement.
Uganda: Navigating complexity: Adaptive management in the Northern Karamoja Growth, Health & Governance program
Development actors increasing agree that managing programs adaptively – especially complex interventions – can improve their effectiveness. But what does adaptive management look like in practice?
Myanmar: Visibility versus Vulnerability
The change taking place in Myanmar has brought new complexities that require an integrated analysis of how economic and political vulnerabilities are tied to instability.
Myanmar: Socio-Economic Analysis of Kayah State in Myanmar
In March - June 2013, a consortium involving Mercy Corps and four other INGO and NGO partners conducted a socio-economic analysis of Kayah State in Myanmar with funding from the European Union.
Iraq: Bridging the Gap
Civil society plays a critical role in ensuring that government is open, participatory and accountable to citizens.
Lebanon: The Role of Municipalities in the Syria Refugee Crisis
Mercy Corps, with funding from the British Embassy in Beirut, conducted extensive assessments of 12 municipalities in Lebanon's "hot spots" to better understand how municipalities are responding to
Lebanon: Political, Economic and Social Instability in Lebanon
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Jordan: Tapped Out: Water scarcity and refugee pressures in Jordan
Jordan, one of the world’s driest countries, is dumping much of its water into the sand. This new report outlines urgent needs and key recommendations to guide immediate and long-term interventions.
Uganda: The Conflict Management System in Karamoja: An Assessment of Strengths and Weaknesses
"The Conflict Management System in Karamoja: An assessment of strengths and weaknesses” (April 2013) explores the effectiveness of the conflict management system in northern Uganda’s remote Karamoj
Civic Engagement of Youth in the Middle East and North Africa
In the wake of the Arab Awakening, Mercy Corps and other agencies are grappling with the question: How can the recent surge of self-assertion and of political activism by Arab youth be harnessed to