Managing precarity? Civil Society groups and donor retreat in the Eastern Caribbean

Sarah Peck

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Money is a crucial, yet contested aspect of global development. This article focuses on the monetary flows connected to civil society organisations (CSOs). CSOs have traditionally been conceptualised at the bottom of vertical aid chains, exemplifying their dependence on international donors. The retreat of traditional donors from regions such as the Caribbean has the potential to alter the way CSOs operate and their engagement in development activities. Based on empirical research with CSOs in Barbados and Grenada this paper explores the perceived impact of donor withdrawal from the region and discusses three key strategies civil society groups employ in this context. The paper argues that despite feeling increasingly vulnerable, civil society groups are responding by continuing to creatively draw on diverse social, emotional and financial resources to manage this precarity. However, some of these efforts add to the insecurity felt by civil society groups further increasing their fragility. This paper then aims to add to the body of work that is re-evaluating different aspects of global development finance in changing financial times.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)451-472
Number of pages21
JournalInternational Development Planning Review
Issue number4
Early online date14 Oct 2019
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2019
Externally publishedYes


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