Multiparty Cooperation for Development in Asia
By L. David Brown and Rajesh Tandon | March 1992 | View Full Text
This paper, published by the United Nations Development Programme's Regional Bureau for Asia and Pacific, discusses seven cases of cooperative problem solving by people's organizations, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), governmental agencies, and international donor and development agencies in six Asian countries. The paper seeks to identify when and why such cooperations lead to enduring improvements in intractable development problems, and the implications of those findings for national and international development policy-makers.
Problems of social and economic development are often dauntingly complex and interdependent, involving constellations of interacting problems that reinforce each other. Such problems are often intractable to the efforts of any single organization or agency. Multiparty cooperation that involves organizations and groups with diverse resources has emerged in many different settings as a potential strategy for dealing with such problems.
This paper compares seven cases of multiparty cooperation on a wide range of development problems in six different countries. Casewriters were selected who could gain access to all the parties, and especially to the grassroots participants. Initial drafts of the cases were discussed and analyzed in a conference that brought together casewriters, representatives of grassroots groups, and outside experts. This work provided a basis for the analysis of this paper.
This analysis suggested that the evolution of cooperation in the cases needs to be understood in the context of seven themes, including: (a) the historical context, (b) framing the problems, (c) conflict and cooperation, (d) power differences, (e) organizing joint work, (f) expanding impacts and levels of aggregation, and (g) cooperation outcomes.
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