UNV-Forum Paper 2014

International Volunteering and Governance

This research paper summarises the UNV-Forum-commissioned report on International Volunteering and Governance. It aims to highlight case examples to demonstrate various ways that volunteers and IVCOs have strengthened public government structures through formal and informal interventions. The conceptual framework investigates contributions of volunteerism at multiple levels of governance – from macro-level government structures and policy frameworks to micro level personal values and normative constraints. In addition to volunteers’ formal contributions to governance, the research also assesses informal social and group norms on governance processes that are often overlooked. It illustrates how volunteers’ efforts to strengthen governance from below and above is a critical combination – escalating citizen engagement as well as building capacity and structural changes in higher governance institutions.

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