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Maxwell School
Maxwell / Moynihan / Transnational NGO Initiative

Virtual NGOs


The TNGO Initiative is conducting exciting research on the continuum of traditional to virtual NGOs; a comparison of their strategies and tactics, their organizational and leadership attributes, and how the two sides can complement each other within civil society.  We are also interested in the responsiveness of digitally enabled NGOs to both current issues as well as to the ‘personal action frames’ of citizens; how to assess the effectiveness of their actions, as well as resource dependency challenges. By conducting this research, we hope to uncover what different typologies of NGOs on the spectrum can learn from one another in order to be effective. We benefit from receiving advice from colleagues at George Washington University, including Steven Livingston [https://smpa.gwu.edu/steven-livingston]  and David Karpf [http://smpa.gwu.edu/david-karpf] who have worked on aspects of this subject for a much longer time. 


As part of the initial, exploratory phase of our research, we will host a debate in April 2015 in which leaders of several NGOs on this spectrum as well as academics will discuss their responses to a real life scenario, and in which the audience will participate in uncovering complementarities and ways of collaborating. We hope to hold this debate in DC, with live streaming and video recording.

virtual NGO research
October 2014 meeting at Minnowbrook Retreat Center.