Date of Award
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
In Senegal, local communities have faced a wide range of economic and political challenges. In their attempt to address these issues, local and international non-governmental organizations (NGOs) have engaged in a wide variety of improvement projects, and have often partnered together in these efforts. This dissertation examines the linkages formed between Senegalese and international NGOs in their efforts to achieve their aspirations of improvement for the country in a context of global interconnection. By engaging with relevant literature and ethnographic data collected through anthropological research efforts, I seek to provide a more in-depth understanding of the perspectives and experiences of NGO practitioners in Senegal while considering the interrelated issues of global connection, civil society and social hope. My research aims to contribute to the anthropological discourse on NGOs by examining how practitioners engaged in a variety of NGOs in Senegal understand and approach their work and how they engage in the complex power relationships entailed by these international NGO partnerships. In addition, this study explores the issue of social hope among NGO practitioners, examining how they approach and experience the concept of hope through their NGO efforts at improvement. With a focus on implementing programs targeted at certain groups over a short period of time, the hope of NGO staff involves a desire for long-term change despite the challenges faced. This study also considers the aspirations of NGO staff with respect to their political engagement with the state and their perception of Senegal’s place in the world. This involves exploring their belief that civil society and NGOs are the basis for hope in Senegal rather than the state. In this context, NGOs seek improvement by working within the political and economic system, constrained and limited by the dictates of their external donors and their approach to social change.
Mossman, Kathryn E., "Aspirations for Senegal: Exploring International NGO Connections" (2011). Open Access Dissertations and Theses. Paper 6157.
McMaster University Library