Non Governmental Organisations And Their Influence on International Society:
Ann Marie Clark’s article “Non-Government Organisations
and their influence on International Society” in the 1995 winter volume of Journal
of International Affairs, attempts to tell how Non-Governmental
organisations affirm their influence in the international society. It explains
they have had significant increase over the last one hundred years, with the
most prominent causes being Human Rights and Environmental Protection. Clark
forwards that the regime theory dictates international governmental bodies
create a system of regimes where states can pursue their self-interest on a
specific issues and that it stands to reason NGOs would also gravitate towards
these “regime-based institutions” (because by nature they are issue specific
bodies) in order to influence states. However,
Clarke goes on to argue that NGOs are influential and effective because they tend to champion causes governments and governmental agencies pay little or no attention to. Furthermore, their scope of concern is significantly smaller that state bodies, allowing them to focus more energy and resources on their particular cause. This affords them levels of expertise that governmental agencies can only envy.
On the other hand there are some faults with her article.
The piece is supposedly about NGOs and their influence, yet it does not get
into the meat of the matter until the 11th page of the 19 page long
essay. This was as a result of the unnecessary time spent giving generic
background information. In addition,
In my opinion the piece was not poor and it does take stride to be layman friendly, but it was not the best article that could possible be written, especially given the title. I think a more relevant article would have been to examine the influences that NGOs have on governmental bodies—whether it was positive or negative; if the channels which they choose were legal or legal; and if influence flows the other way as well possibly reducing the NGOs fronts for particular governments. None of the above was mentioned let alone examined in the item.
As previously mentioned
Taking everything in consideration the author did not do justice to her title and her opportunity to be heard. Given what she wrote, I believe a better title would have been “Non-Governmental Organisation: Their ways of Influence.”