Devising and Implementing Effective NGO Regulations

Our background

Greenacre’s Senior Associates are former government officials. Phil Cooper and Ben Evans have forty years’ combined experience with the Charity Commission for England and Wales, the regulator of NGOs in the UK and widely recognised as the world’s leading NGO regulator.

Between them, they have been directly involved in the core aspects of NGO regulation: registration, monitoring, case-working, inspection visits and investigations; as well as in more specialist roles, such as intensive care (dealing with sensitive complaints and disputes); publications; business continuity; IT strategy; and e-business.

Greenacre can also call on a wider range of NGO regulation specialists from its pool of Associates. These include leading specialists in their fields with practical experience of applying their knowledge in different countries.

Our International Experience

For seven years our Senior Associates led technical assistance programmes from the UK government to governments in Asia and Africa. They have provided technical assistance and advice to governments on best practice in all aspects of NGO regulation, including the development of and training in new regulatory systems for government ministries in the Gulf, South Asia, South East Asia and Sub-saharan Africa.

Assistance Provided

Greenacre offers a full service to governments wishing to review or reform their NGO regulation.

Review, Analysis and Advice

Our Senior Associates have authored reviews and comparative studies of laws and regulations in more than twenty countries. Such reviews help identify if regulations are effective, are consistent with international best practices, and are complaint with binding regulations such as FATF Recommendation 8.

Our reviews will usually make recommendations on reforms to the NGO regulatory systems. These recommendation can form the basis of reforms undertaken by the government, or lead to the development of new regulatory systems (see below).

Often reviews are confidential, so not all can be listed here: but the countries reviewed by our Senior Associates include Cyprus, Moldova, Bahrain, Jordan, Palestine, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Indonesia, The Philippines, Kenya, Thailand, D.R. Congo, Somalia and the European Union.

Our Senior Associates have provided advice to governments and parliamentarians in a number of countries on best practices in NGO regulation. This advice may be on best practice in general, or on specific topics such as accountability, public benefit, or compliance with FATF R8. Countries advised include the UK, Cyprus, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Kuwait, Jordan, Uzbekistan, Pakistan, Indonesia, Thailand, Singapore, Vietnam, The Philippines and Kenya.

Ben Evans assessing registration systems, Sulawesi

Senior Associate Ben Evans reviewing regulations in Indonesia


Extract from documents setting out a new regulatory system for a Ministry in Asia

Developing new regulatory systems

Our Senior Associates have devised comprehensive new regulatory systems for governments in Asia and Africa. The systems are based on best practice examples from the UK and around the world. We consult widely with government, civil society and donors, and liaise closely with local partners to ensure that systems are appropriate to the local legal, regulatory and cultural context.

The systems cover the core requirements of any regulatory system: registration or licensing; data collection, reporting and monitoring; and investigations.

Not all of our projects can be listed for reasons of client confidentiality. However, contact us and we would be happy to discuss the following major projects in more detail:

  • Developed and implemented new NGO registration, monitoring and reporting system for the Ministry of Social Welfare and Special Education, Pakistan;
  • Developed and implemented new NGO registration, monitoring and reporting system for Ministry of Social Welfare, Indonesia;
  • Developed new NGO regulation system for Federal Government of Somalia.

Implementation and training

Our Senior Associates have provided capacity building training to governments worldwide. Major projects have seen Phil Cooper and Ben Evans lead multi-year projects to train hundreds of government officials from every district in Pakistan and Indonesia. They have also implemeted many smaller projects, training officials in best practice principles or specific regulatory techniques.

As well as the Pakistan and Indonesia, Ben and Phil have trained officials from the governments of The Philipines, Thailand, Kenya, Jordan, UAE, Kuwait, Cyprus, Bahrain, Bangladesh and Oman. They have also provide regional training for government officials from South Asia, South East Asia and the Pacific Islands.