|Organizational Performance and Change Management - Workshop proceedings - October 1-3, 1997, International Institute of Rural Reconstruction (IIRR), Philippines (IIRR, 1997)|
|The external context of NGDOs|
In the domestic scene, despite the relative political stability, modest growth in the economy and reduction in poverty incidence, in the last five years, the country's fundamental problems of underdevelopment continue to exist and provide the rationale for NGDO work.
The role and priorities of the Philippine government have been changing consistent with political movements brought about by globalization. This development has translated into the privatization and deregulation of some of the Government's functions, i.e., the transfer of some of its socially-progressive roles to civil society and corporate organizations. It has also resulted in the State placing primacy on its economic, over its social, reform agenda.
The administration of President Corazon Aquino created an NGO-friendly environment that legitimized PO-NGDO development work. Since then, the State has allowed for democratized spaces within which NGDOs can operate. This has affirmed that the State is not monolithic, it is not a closed arena of struggle, and those who want transformation could use this arena for their struggles.
The Local Government Code (LGC), the Philippine Agenda 21 (PA 21) and the Social Reform Agenda (SRA) are examples of major avenues through which NGDOs can engage. Some of the existing mechanisms for direct NGDO participation in governance include: local government units, national policy and planning as well as government line agencies, sectoral representation in Congress and follow-up activities to United Nations Summits and international covenants. However, the huge task of operationalizing the PA 21 and SRA remains on the shoulders of the NGDO community because the government continues to emphasize economic reforms to the neglect of social reforms.