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Explore the latest articles by Humentum staff on topics spanning decolonizing aid, developing financial reporting standards, the future of NGOs, and more.

WATCH – Operationalizing Locally-Led Development: Exploring Equitable INGO Partnership Models (March 22, 2023)
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From Operations to Outcomes: A Policy Blueprint for Locally-Led Development (March 2023)
Twenty global thought-leaders and 2,000 participants from over 100 countries discussed what it will take to operationalize locally-led development. This report outlines insights from those discussions and key policy recommendations for funders and INGOs to consider.

FY22 Resource Roundup: Locally-Led Development Policy  (December 5, 2022)
See all of our 2022 resources on locally-led development policy in one document.

50,000 companies on hold because of GSA’s UEI validation problems (November 1, 2022)
Jason Miller interviewed Humentum’s Cynthia Smith once again to discuss the impact of delays and glitches in the US Government’s switch from the DUNS numbers to Uniform Entity Identifiers (UEI). These delays continue to have consequences for foreign local partners who are not able to avail themselves of USAID’s temporary exception.

Equitable Development Through Operating Models (October 13, 2022)
Humentum’s Kim Kucinskas walks us through our new theory of change and its implications for equitable, locally-led development and shifting power.

Operationalizing Locally-Led Development: What We Learned (October 18, 2022)
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WATCH – Operationalizing Locally-Led Development: Where Do We Go Next (November 2, 2022)
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Community philanthropy is essential for lasting and transformative change (October 19, 2022)
Jenny Hodgson, Executive Director of Global Fund for Community Foundations, reflects on how community philanthropy shifts power, unlocks collective action, while also highlighting the current challenges.

Operationalizing Locally-Led Development: What We Learned (October 18, 2022)
What we learned from a year-long series of interactive webinars hosted by Humentum. Through those conversations we identified key lessons learned and highlighted promising models to examine further. This summary is a preview of an upcoming report that will share those lessons and models in greater detail, as well as policy recommendations.

How identity numbers have caused chaos for USAID overseas partners (October 10, 2022)
Cynthia Smith discusses the lack of a UEI (unique entity identifier) – and its impact on international organizations – with David Ainsworth in this Devex article.

Who is the UK’s inaugural minister for development, Vicky Ford? (September 8, 2022)
“She’s not just rhetoric and good intentions, it seems she gets that it’s complicated to do good development well. That’s important [for] #locallyled development to make it accountable and resilient.” In this Devex article by Will Worley, Humentum’s Tim Boyes-Watson shares his comments on the appointment of the UK’s inaugural minister for development, Vicky Ford.

WATCH – Operationalizing Locally-Led Development: Innovative Financing (September 7, 2022)
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NGOs need proper back office funding, says Humentum (September 1, 2022)
In an interview for Devex World, Christine Sow, CEO at Humentum, says global development organizations need to bust the myth that it’s possible to run a “proper, robust, accountable” operation on a shoestring.

Rebalancing Risk and Accountability (August 9, 2022)
After Humentum’s fourth installment of our Operationalizing Locally-Led Development webinar series,, we sat down with panelist Dr. Riva Kantowitz, Founder of Radical Flexibility Fund, to hear her perspective on how organizations can reimagine risk and accountability practices to shift power and operationalize LLD.

Donors, here’s how local NGOs want you to fund (July 28, 2022)
Despite the promises, aid money still isn’t making it into the hands of local NGOs. How could donors change their funding practices to deliver better results? Read this Devex article by David Ainsworth which also highlights Humentum’s Administration Costs Research Project report.

Call for funders to move from Value for Money to Value of Ideas (July 27, 2022)
Humentum hosted a webinar to discuss the research and recommendations in the Breaking the Starvation Cycle report. Moderated by Dr. Christine Sow, CEO of Humentum, the panel brought together several experts to discuss the report’s findings and their recommendations for the future.

Growing frustrations puts GSA on hot seat to fix the transition to UEI (July 15, 2022)
Last week Jason Miller interviewed Humentum’s Cynthia Smith  to discuss the impact on our sector of delays and glitches in the US Government’s switch from the DUNS numbers to Uniform Entity Identifiers (UEI). Cynthia has been advocating with USAID, State Dept, and GSA on this matter on behalf of our members, who have sent a number of requests for assistance.

WATCH – Operationalizing Locally-Led Development – Reimagining Risk and Accountability (July 6, 2022)
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WATCH: Breaking the starvation cycle – report findings (June 15, 2022)
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A necessary operating model for equity in global development (June 8, 2022)
In this Devex article, our CEO Christine Sow affirms a power shift toward an equity-centered model of development to ensure fair, meaningful, and lasting change in the sector. Find out how Humentum is helping organizations move from talk to action

WATCH – Operationalizing Locally-Led Development: Building Partnerships of “Consequence” (May 4, 2022)
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How funders are trapping local NGOs in a ‘starvation cycle’ (March, 28, 2022)
In their grants to local NGOs, funders are not providing enough money to cover projects’ administration costs, according to a new report. As a result, many organizations can’t build capacity to take on bigger projects. David Ainsworth of Devex discusses Administration Costs Research Project report released by Humentum.

Project Grants Need Not Be the Enemy—A Three-Part Series: Part 2 (March 28, 2022)
This Chronicle of Philanthropy article introduces results of the Administration Costs Research Project  report from Humentum commissioned by Funders for Real Cost, Real Change. It focuses on the impact of funders’ indirect cost recovery practices on international NGOs in ten countries across five regions of the globe.

New Findings Show How Funders Need to Break the NGO Starvation Cycle (March 28, 2022)
Humentum, in partnership with Funders for Real Cost, Real Change, a collaborative of private foundations, released a groundbreaking research report revealing inadequate coverage of administrative costs by funders. The data demonstrates how international funders are trapping their grantees in a “starvation cycle” by not sufficiently funding their administrative or so-called overhead costs.

WATCH: Operationalizing Locally-Led Development: Debunking the Myths (March 24, 2022)
View the recording from this webinar series.

Operationalizing Locally-Led Development: Debunking the Myths (March 24, 2022)
In the second installment of this webinar series moderated by Humentum’s CEO, Dr. Christine Sow, panelists unpacked three of the more prevalent myths surrounding locally-led development and offered their insights on how the sector might dismantle these harmful narratives. Cynthia Smith and Jenna Thoretz share an overview.

Opinion: Locally led development — what it means to me (February 28, 2022)
What does locally-led development look like in practice? Humentum’s new director of Locally-led Development, Ennie Chipembere Chikwema, discusses this in today’s Devex article.

Creating an environment where fraud cannot thrive (February 17, 2022)
Samantha Musoke, Project Director of IFR4NPO, discusses preventing, detecting, and responding to fraud, as well the importance of cultures and values. Organizations can take steps to ensure it doesn’t thrive—find out more.

WATCH: Locally-Led – Operationalizing USAID’s New Vision (February 1, 2022)
View the recording from this webinar series.

Locally-Led: Operationalizing USAID’s New Vision (February 1, 2022)
Humentum’s new webinar series, Operationalizing Locally-Led Development, will delve into the myriad operational challenges of realizing locally-led development. Humentum’s Jenna Thoretz shares an overview of the first installment, moderated by our CEO, Dr. Christine Sow, which unpacked the structural barriers to realizing USAID’s new vision for global development.

Section 889: US Chinese telecoms clause causing chaos for NGOs (December 2, 2021)
Read David Ainsworth’s latest Devex article on one of the latest challenges for NGOs, Section 889 of the National Defense Authorization Act, featuring Humentum’s own Cynthia Smith.

Operationalizing USAID’s New Vision for Global Development (November 29, 2021)
Earlier this month, USAID Administrator Samantha Power outlined “A New Vision for Global Development,” which places inclusive development at the fore of the Agency’s agenda. Humentum’s Cynthia Smith and Jenna Thoretz discuss what is required to turn policy propositions such as these into reality.

One INGO’s Journey to Work Themselves Out of a Job (November 19, 2021)
In October 2021, Health Alliance International announced its intentional dissolution. From the decision-making process and the conditions that enabled it to happen, join Humentum’s Kim Kucinskas as she sits down with Tracy Woodman to learn more.

What Implementing Partners need to know about the USAID Office of Inspector General (November 17, 2021)
We recently hosted a webinar with the USAID Office of the Inspector General (OIG) to explore its current priorities, including misuse of funds, digital fraud and preventing PSEAH. Join Jessica Walker and Cynthia Smith as they walk Implementing Partners through the OIG’s approach.

Opinion: How INGO CEOs are acting their way into the future (October 22, 2021)
Our CEO Christine Sow along with a cohort of other INGO CEOS have been discussing the future of leadership in international development. Learn more in this morning’s opEd with Devex.

SEAH Safeguarding: Operationalizing Preventative Measures (September 20, 2021)
Sonam Penzo and Humentum’s Cynthia Smith discuss the importance of safeguarding measures to prevent SEAH abuses, outlining the proactive steps organizations can take. Learn more about the support Humentum offers to help build an organizational culture that values safeguarding.

Global Development: Reassembling our World of Work (August 3, 2021)
Humentum’s Kim Kucinskas shares our OpEx365 zine—a visual storyboard offering recommendations for acting our way into the future. What does it mean to truly re-imagine our world of work?

Spotlight: Decolonizing Development (July 6, 2021)
Humentum’s Government Affairs and Advocacy Intern Jenna Thoretz examines and unpacks the current dialogue on decolonizing development and offers suggestions for sectoral change.

Opinion: Nonprofits need an international standard for financial reporting (Devex – June 28, 2021)
The existing system is fragmented and working for no one, writes Samantha Musoke, Humentum’s Project Director for the International Financial Reporting for Non-Profit Organisations initiative.

Watch: Who Represents Whom? Decolonizing Humanitarian Governance (June 22, 2021)
The Center for Global Development and Humentum’s CEO Dr. Christine Sow bring together representatives from across the sector to share experiences and lessons learned about why diversity and representation at governance level matter, and how to improve them.

Watch: How the past year will shape NGOs of the future (Devex – June 21, 2021)
In this Devex Live event, we hear from NGO leaders, including Humentum’s Tim Boyes-Watson, about how COVID-19, racial justice movements, and funding challenges in 2020 could be the spark for much-needed change.

Opinion: Benchmarking race, inclusion, and diversity in US dev orgs (Devex – June 2, 2021)
Humentum’s Kim Kucinskas discusses the BRIDGE survey results, which provide a benchmark of diversity, equity, and inclusion among headquarters staff of international development and humanitarian assistance organizations in the United States.

The Post-Pandemic NGO (Devex – May 5, 2021)
A pandemic, an international racial justice movement, and calls for decolonizing aid mean the development sector is changing fast. Devex’s William Worley explains what’s on the horizon.

Operationalizing Locally-Led Development Webinar Series
See all of the webinars in our 2022 Operationalizing Locally-Led Development webinar series in one place.


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Reassembling the Way We Work in Global Development

After a year of listening and learning with the Humentum Community through our OpEx365 series, hear the story of how and why the global development sector must reassemble the way that we work, in less than 10 minutes