CV - Alan Fowler
ABRIDGED CURRICULM VITAE1
Prof. ALAN F. FOWLER
Bridging diverse types of institutions, my background has turned me into a ‘pracademic’ involved in
both the theory and practice of international development. Formal education includes studies in:
politics and political-economy, the organisation and management of non profit organisations
involved in development, rural extension, vocational training, education and electronic engineering.
Over forty years of professional work as a project manager; an adviser to a range of development
organisations; as a Visiting Fellow at the World Bank Washington, D.C. and with the Society for
Participatory Research in Asia, New Delhi: as well as a programme officer in the Ford Foundation.
This practical knowledge is complemented by academic appointments as affiliate and now emeritus
professor, Erasmus University, the Netherlands; as visiting fellow at, Centre for Civil Society,
University of Natal; and as a visiting Senior Research Fellow at Oxford Brookes University. I have
additional working experience in French, Dutch and Arabic speaking countries as a teacher, a
manager in transnational companies and as an engineer.
Practical initiatives include co-founding the International NGO Training and Research Centre
(INTRAC) based in Oxford, U.K, in 1991 and, in 2005, Inter-Mediation International, a US registered
NGO dedicated to enhancing the (inter-)relational capabilities of development actors. In addition, I
have acted as convenor of the NGO Study Group of the Development Studies Association of the UK
and Ireland and served as a mentor to young professionals.
Voluntary service includes an elected board member and past president of the International Society
for Third Sector Research (ISTR) and as a board member of CIVICUS, the World Alliance for Citizen
Current professional activities centre on: 1) civic driven change and citizen engagement in multicentred systems of governance, allied to social accountability; (2) (re-)design of CSOs/NGOs
involving their governance, strategy, accountability, transparency, impact evidence and internal
conflict management; 3) aid effectiveness and system reform; 4) innovation and performance
measurement in social investment and enterprise; 5) capacity development and its evaluation,
particularly of multi-stakeholder initiatives. Research focuses on interlocutors, civic innovation, new
forms of activism and applying complexity theory to development.
Ol Donyo Rongai
P.O. Box 32
A complete CV is available on request.
Alan Frederick FOWLER.
3rd February 1947, London, England.
Tel: +27 (0)28 735 2174
Fax: +27 (0)28 735 2178
Doctor of Philosophy. 1993
Certificate in Rural Extension.
Diploma in Education. 1976
Higher National Diploma in
Electrical Engineering. 1968
Institute of Development Studies, University of Sussex. Thesis on the
role of non-governmental organisations in Kenya's democratisation.
Higher Vocational Training Institute "Nieuwe, Rollencate" and the
Royal Tropical Institute, The Netherlands.
Netherlands Institute for Vocational Teacher Training.
Watford Polytechnic (England). Specialisation in computing and
Tavistock Institute, England.
New Economics Foundation, 1997.
‘Leicester Working Conference’ on Authority, Leadership and
Introduction to Social Auditing and Ethical Accounting.
WORK EXPERIENCE SINCE 1990
Independent development adviser and analyst.
Advisory services related to international development, governance and civil society.
Emeritus Professor, Institute of Social Studies, Erasmus University, The Hague.
Member, Civic Innovation Research Initiative
Member of the Expert Roster, UNDP Oslo Governance Centre.
Visiting Scholar, Centre for Civil Society, University of KwaZulu Natal.
Research support and analysis, academic supervisor and examiner.
Co-Founder Inter-Mediation.org, USA.
Innovation and provision of methods and advisory services that enhance ‘collaborative
competence’ and effectiveness of relationships within and between multiple
3/94 – 5/97 Senior Research Fellow (fractional appointment), Oxford Brookes University, UK
Research on NGO leadership in Kenya.
2 - 3/95
Visiting Fellow, Society for Participatory Research in Asia (PRIA), New Delhi.
Providing training to senior NGO staff from South Asia and strategic orientations to
Indian NGO support organisations.
7/94 - 1/95
Independent consultant, development analyst and writer.
1/94 - 6/94
Visiting Fellow, Human Resources Vice Presidency, the World Bank.
Policy advice and analytic support to the Bank's learning in the areas of people's
participation, governance and interacting with NGOs.
9/90 - 12/93 Post-graduate studies, University of Sussex. Part-time consultant. Co-founder and
interim co-director, INTRAC.
1/88 - 8/90
Programme Officer. The Ford Foundation, office for eastern and southern Africa.
Responsible for a regional programme in Governance and Public Policy, involving
support to the NGO sector, civic participation, capacity building and governmental
Curriculum Vitae - Alan F. Fowler
PROFESSIONAL VOLUNTARY SERVICE AND AFFILIATIONS
President, International Society for Third Sector Research (ISTR) 2003-2004.
Board Member and Chair of Programme Committee, CIVICUS, World Alliance for Citizen
Member of the Management Committee of the Institute of Development Studies Alumni
Council Member, Development Studies Association of Great Britain and Ireland, 1992-1995.
Member of the Society for International Development. Vice Chairman Kenya, 1989 - 1990
Convenor, NGO Study Group of the UK Development Studies Association, 1990-1993.
ONGOING RESEARCH AND STUDIES
Survey of INGO internal conflict management
Investigation of Multi-stakeholders initiatives.
Civic Innovation Research Initiative, commencing 2013
IMI and Amnesty International
CSO Task Team, SIDA/DGIS
Institute of Social Studies
MENTORING AND COACHING
Idil Sheytanoglou, North Cyprus. EU Person to Person
Louis Dorval, Canada. McDonald Foundation Scholarship.
Organisational development of
non-profits and social economy.
NGO accountability and learning in
SELECTED RECENT COMMISSIONS
Activity or Title
Strategy and Analysis of Theory of Change, 2014.
Adviser on organisational alignment around Child Centred Community
Adviser, governance reform and strengthening processes. 2014
Input to organisational strategy and futures workshop. 2014
Centre for African Family
Approaches to intra-organisational conflict of International NGOs
Study on the nature and value of Social Innovation.
Member, working group on design and governance of international
civil society organisations. 2012
Adviser on self-evaluation of partnership and relational competence.
Berlin Civil Society Centre
Adviser on connecting evidence, transparency, governance and
accountability. January 2011 ongoing.
Adviser on civil society, partnership and governance. May 2011ongoing
Member of external review team for governance and human
Member of advisory committee of an evaluation of capacity
development by Dutch NGOs, 2009-2010
World Vision International
Plan Australia 2102
DGIS, Inspectorate for
Operations and Policy
Curriculum Vitae - Alan F. Fowler
Mid Term Review, Civil Society Support Mechanism, Mozambique, May
Annual Review, Southern Africa Trust, Johannesburg, March 2010.
Organisational Development Review, Centre for Social Accountability,
Rhodes University. January-May, 2010.
DFID, Southern Africa.
Assessments of NGOs and evaluations of their capacity, programmes and projects
Assessment of rights in Child Centred Community Development, June
An evaluation of the Postgraduate Diploma in Nonprofit Leadership and BRAC, Bangladesh
Management. January 2005.
Adviser on the future of Civil Society assessments.
Programme development adviser to the Ministry of Capacity Building,
Civil Society Unit, Ethiopia. 2003-2004.
Drafting of a revised corporate policy statement on partnership with
civil society organisations. December, 2000.
Study on an enabling environment for civil society. May 2000
UNDP, New York
UNDP, New York.
World Bank, NGO Unit.
BOOKS AUTHORED AND (CO-)EDITED
The ACORD Transformation 1976-2010: Overcoming Uncertainty, Agency for Cooperation and
Research in Development, Nairobi.
NGO Management: The Earthscan Companion, Earthscan, London. 2010 (co-edited with Chiku
Capacity Development in Practice, Earthscan, London. 2010 (Co-edited with Jan Ubels and Naaaku Acquaye-Baddoo)
Civic Driven Change: Citizen’s Imagination in Action, Institute of Social Studies, The Hague,
October 2008. www.iss.nl/cdc (Co-Edited with Kees Biekart). Spanish translation: Biekart,
K. and Fowler, A. (eds), 2011, El cambio dirigido por la acción civica, Icaria, Madrid.
Indigenising Foreign Seed on African Soil: The Story of K-Rep, Kenya Rural Enterprise Programme,
Nairobi, May 2004. (Co-authored with Kabiru Kinyanjui)
International Development Frameworks, Policies, Priorities and Implications: A Basic Guide for
NGOs, Oxfam Canada, Ottawa. 2003. www.oxfam.ca (Translations in French, Spanish and
The Earthscan Reader in NGO Management, Earthscan, London, May 2002. (Co-edited with
The Virtuous Spiral: A Guide to Sustainability for NGOs in International Development, Earthscan,
Striking a Balance: A Guide to Enhancing the Effectiveness of Non-Governmental Organisations in
International Development, Earthscan, London, 1997. (Translations in Russian)
Institutional Development and NGOs in Africa: Policy Perspectives for European Development
Agencies, NGO Management and Policy Series, International NGO Training and Research
Centre and NOVIB, Oxford/The Hague, 1993. (With Piers Campbell and Brian Pratt)
OTHER PUBLICATIONS AND PAPERS
Publications since 2010 (full list available)
Curriculum Vitae - Alan F. Fowler
Fowler, A. and Biekart, K., 2014, “Navigating Polycentric Governance; A View from the Middle”,
paper presented at a conference Responsible development in a Polycentric World, Bonn, 2316 June.
Fowler, A., 2014, "Innovation in Institutional Collaboration: The Role of Interlocutors", Working
Paper, 584, International Institute of Social Studies, Erasmus University, Rotterdam.
Fowler, A., 2014, “Changing direction: Adapting foreign philanthropy to endogenous
understandings and practices”, in Mottiar, S., Ngcoya, M. and Maharaj, B. (eds), Philanthropy
in South Africa, Centre for Civil Society, University of KwaZulu Natal, University of KwaZulu
Natal Press, forthcoming.
Fowler, A., 2013, Civic Driven Change: Where From? Where Now? Where Next?, Valedictory
Lecture, Institute of Social Studies, The Hague, October.
Fowler, A., 2013, Social Innovation: New Game, New Dawn or False Promise?, Hivos, The Hague.
Fowler, A., 2013, Social Innovation: A Way of Reinventing Hivos for Humanism in the 21st Century?,
Hivos, The Hague.
Fowler, A., 2013, “Improving NGO governance: practical applications of the GATE approach”,
Development in Practice, Vol. 23, No. 1, pp. 137-144.
Biekart, K. and Fowler, A., 2013, “Transforming Activisms 2010+: Exploring Ways and Waves”, in
Biekart, K. (ed), Development and Change Forum 2013, Vol. 44, No. 3, pp. 527-546.
Fowler, A. and Biekart, K., 2013, "Relocating Civil Society in a Politics of Civic Driven Change",
Development Policy Review, Vol. 31, No. 4, pp. 463-483.
Fowler, A. and Wilkinson-Maposa, S., 2013, “Horizontal Philanthropy Among Poor People in
Southern Africa: Grounded Perspectives on Social Capital and Civic Association”, in Aina, T,
and Moyo, B. (eds), Giving to Help, Helping to Give: The Context and Politics of African
Philanthropy, pp. 105-130, Amalion Press, Dakar.
Fowler, A., 2013, “Civil Society and Aid in Africa: A case of mistaken identity?” in Obadare, E., (ed),
Handbook of Civil Society in Africa, pp. 417-438, Springer, New York.
Costa, D., Fowler, A, Gnaerig, B., Jayawickrama, S., MacCormack, C., Parchman, W. and Struven, P.,
2012, Taking a Strategic Approach to Governance Reform in International Civil Society
Organisations (ICSOs): A proposal for Global Boards and CEOs on how to conduct reform in
their organisations, Berlin Centre for Civil Society, Berlin.
Fowler, A. and Jayawickrama, S., 2012, “Strengthening ICSO Governance: walking the talk before it is
too late”, in Global Futures: How international civil society organisations can make a real
difference, pp. 38-39, Berlin Civil Society Centre, Berlin.
Fowler, A., 2012, “Are foundations more risk-averse than necessary?, Alliance, Vol. 17, No. 2, p. 40.
Biekart, K. and Fowler, A. 2012, “A civic agency perspective on change”, Development, Vol. 55, No.
2, pp. 181 -189.
Fowler, A. and Biekart, K., 2012, “Citizenship and the Politics of Civic Driven Change”, in Petty, D.
and MacFarland, C. (eds), Citizenship: Practices Types and Challenges, pp. 78 – 94, Nova
Publishers, New York.
Fowler, A., 2012, “Measuring Civil Society: Perspectives on Afro-Centrism”, Voluntas, Vol. 23, No. 1.
Fowler, A. 2011, “Integrated (rural) development in the 21st century: venture philanthropy –
connecting economics, technology, sociology and politics”, in van der Velden, F., (ed) New
approaches to development cooperation, pp. 27-37, Context International Cooperation,
Curriculum Vitae - Alan F. Fowler
Keijzer, N., Spierings, E., Phlix, G. and Fowler, A., 2011, Bringing the invisible into perspective:
Reference paper for using the 5Cs framework to plan, monitor and evaluate capacity and
results of capacity development processes, European Centre for development Policy
Management, Maastricht. http://www.ecdpm.org/5Cs
Fowler, A. and Biekart, C., 2011, “Civic Driven Change: a narrative to bring politics back into civil
society discourse”, Working Paper, 529, International Institute for Social Studies, the Hague,
Fowler, A. and Biekart, K., 2011, “Citizenship and the Politics of Civic Driven Change”, in Petty, D and
MacFarland, C. (eds), Citizenship: Practices Types and Challenges, Nova Publishers, New York.
Fowler, A., 2011, "Beyond Civil Society: Civic Driven Change and Governance in Africa", paper
presented at the Africa Civil Society Network Research Conference, Stellenbosch, 24-26,
Fowler, A., 2011, "Perspectives on Afro-Centrism in Civil Society research", paper presented at the
Africa Civil Society Network Research Conference, Stellenbosch, 24-26, August.
Fowler, A. and Biekart, K., 2011, "(Re)locating Civil Society in the Politics of Civic Driven Change",
paper presented at the Development Studies Association and European Association of
Development Institutions Conference, York University, 19-22 September.
Fowler, A., 2011, “From Sectors to processes; Understanding Civil Society in Action”, in Anheier, H.,
Fowler, A., Holloway, R. and Kandil, A., 2011, The Future of Participatory Civil Society
Assessments: A Conceptual Analysis, pp. 10 – 22, Civil Society Division, United Nations
Development Programme, New York.
Fowler, A., 2011, “Development NGOs”, in Edwards, M. (ed), The Oxford Handbook of Civil Society,
pp. 42 -54, Oxford University Press.
Fowler, A. and Wilkinson-Maposa, S., 2011, “Horizontal Philanthropy Among Poor People in
Southern Africa: Grounded Perspectives on Social Capital and Civic Association”, in Moyo, B.
and Opuku-Mensah, P. (eds), The State of Philanthropy in Africa, forthcoming.
Fowler, A. and Ubels, J., 2010, “The Multi-Faceted Nature of Capacity: Two Leading Models", in
Ubels, J., Acquaye-Baddoo, N-A. and Fowler, A. (eds), Capacity Development in Practice, pp. 1124, Earthscan, London.
Greijn, H. and Fowler, A., 2010, "Effective Capacity Development: The Importance of Connecting
Time Frames, in Ubels, J., Acquaye-Baddoo, N-A. and Fowler, A. (eds), Capacity Development in
Practice, pp. 244-257, Earthscan, London.
Ubels, J., Fowler, A. and Acquaye-Baddoo, N-A., 2010, "Learning about the Field of Capacity
Development: Characteristics, Practitioner Challenges and Future Perspectives", in Ubels, J.,
Acquaye-Baddoo, N-A. and Fowler, A. (eds), Capacity Development in Practice, pp. 291-302,
Acquaye-Baddoo, N-A, Ubels, J. and Fowler, A., 2010, "A Professional Field in Formation?", in Ubels,
J., Acquaye-Baddoo, N-A. and Fowler, A. (eds), Capacity Development in Practice, pp. 319-324,
Fowler, A, 2010, “Behaviour of the boundary spanners”, Capacity.Org, No. 39, pp. 8-9,