Issues of participation in a University-NGO, North-South partnership: Internationalizing a CED program

John Brohman, Irene Gannitsos, Mark Roseland

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


The increasing collaboration of universities with outside organizations in international development work has been accompanied by a number of issues and challenges, particularly in the critical area of participation and partnership. Some of these challenges are common to collaborative North-South development initiatives in general (for example, logistical difficulties, cultural differences, unequal power relations), while others are rooted in the particular values, structures, and regulations of universities and their partners (for example, systems of career advancement, grant recognition, disciplinary fragmentation, government-mandated regulations). These issues are addressed within the context of a CIDA/UPCD project to create a CED program in Mexico, involving a partnership between a Canadian public university (SFU), a Mexican private university (ITESM), and a Mexican NGO (CEDAC) oriented toward community development and poverty alleviation. Analysis and policy recommendations focus on the following issues: the need for (government) funders to encourage a more truly participatory approach to development by assuming a more flexible, less formulaic stance toward use of, and control over, financial resources between Canadian and overseas partners; and the need for universities to match their rhetoric concerning internationalization with concrete measures to add incentives and remove disincentives to the participation of academic programs and faculty in practical development initiatives.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)89-105
Number of pages17
JournalCanadian Journal of Development Studies
Issue number1
StatePublished - May 2003
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Development


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