Live Q&A: How can NGOs lobby effectively to impact the political agenda?

As the UK General Election campaign kicks off we ask how NGOs can lobby effectively. Join our panel from 1-3pm BST on Thursday 2 April to discuss how to make changes happen

The Guardian

After the UK became the first country in the G7 to adopt the long-standing UN target to spend 0.7% of GDP on foreign aid, the chancellor was in high spirits.

“We should all take pride in this historic moment for the country,” said George Osborne as he delivered his budget statement to MPs.


14 changes UK NGOs must make to be relevant in 10 years time

How can UK NGOs face the challenges of the next 10 years? Our panel has these suggestions

By Rachel Banning-Lover

The Guardian US

Be open to new ideas: There’s a sense that NGOs feel that we have to protect our space but civil society has always been organic and evolving. Some large NGOs are now seen as part of a broken system but we need to be better at being provocative, challenging, and value-driven when looking at how we can make changes. Connell Foley, director of strategy, advocacy and learning, Concern Worldwide, Dublin, Ireland @Concern


National security? China ready to slam door on foreign NGOs.

New law would allow Beijing to filter out foreign funding of groups that support free expression and civil society.

By Peter Ford

The Christian Science Monitor

Beijing — After years of operating in a precarious legal limbo, foreign non-governmental organizations in China are facing a moment of truth that could force many of them to close their doors.

The Chinese government is drafting a new foreign NGO law that is widely expected to make work more difficult, if not impossible, for many of the 6,000 overseas non-profits that operate here in a broad range of fields from education and the environment to HIV-Aids and legal education.


Italian Seismic Legislation is Unjustified and should Not Be Enacted

Executive Summary

The Italian Senate, one of the two parliamentary chambers, recently approved by a narrow margin (114 to 103) an amendment to new rules that would make the use of seismic surveys (with “air-gun technology or other explosive techniques”) an eco-crime with 1 to 3 years of imprisonment. As of the date this article was posted, the Italian Parliament had not yet voted on this amendment

There is no justification for this proposed new crime. Oil and gas seismic is legal and heavily regulated in Brazil and many other countries. Under this regulatory regime, every objective review concludes that there is no reason to believe seismic is harming any marine mammal population or any other species.


Can the Private Sector Replace NGOs in the Developing World?

By Elijah Wolfson


In western Kenya, Mikkel Vestergaard Frandsen is sometimes treated like a demigod.

When I accompany him on his visit to local schools, we are barely out of the SUV when we are swarmed by children in sort-of-matching uniforms, singing and dancing. Everywhere we go, people—kids and adults—spontaneously break into a chant: “Asante, LifeStraw, asante!” (“Thank you, LifeStraw, thank you!”) At the Emusanda Health Centre in Lurambi—built with Vestergaard funding—teary-eyed man expressed the community’s gratitude, telling Vestergaard (he doesn’t use the Frandsen part of his last name) that “there are babies being born named after you.”


15 ways NGOs can attract positive media attention

In a world where competing crises clamour for news spots, how can NGOs get their messages out? Our panel has these suggestions

By Anna Leach

The Guardian

Be clear about your message: First thing, figure out what you actually want to say and why. Sounds basic and is but will help you to decide which media to target and with what. Andy Shipley, news editor, Plan UK, London, UK, @andyshipley