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West Africa Civil Society Institute (WACSI);
Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) are major drivers of socio-economic transformation in both the industrialised and developing world. According to estimates by the International Council for Small Business (ICSB), they make up over 90% of business globally, 60% of global employment, and half of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of any economy. In Sub-Saharan Africa, Micro Small and Medium Enterprises account for over 95% of all business.. In Nigeria, many privately-run businesses are MSMEs. According to a recent national survey by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), there are a total of 41.5 million MSMEs in the country that provide 59.6 million Nigerians with employment – thereby making up over 85% of the national workforce. Citizens majorly drive these MSMEs at the bottom of the economic pyramid – many of whom start these enterprises as a means of survival. The rising unemployment rates in the country has further created a situation of rising inflation as well as the downsising of major corporations. As a result, the number of people going into business – mainly small and micro businesses as a means of survival continues to rise.
Open Society Foundations;
The Mapping Digital Media project examines the global opportunities and risks created by the transition from traditional to digital media. Covering 60 countries, the project examines how these changes affect the core democratic service that any media system should provide: news about political, economic, and social affairs.
Nigeria has a relatively high internet penetration rate, driven primarily by a rapid expansion of mobile platforms. Recent figures suggest that over a third of the population have access to the internet and there are over 50 mobile phones per 100 Nigerians. However, internet access is concentrated geographically within just 16 percent of the country, and overwhelmingly within urban areas. Access to digital broadcasting platforms is largely contained within pay-TV networks, and free-to-air digital broadcasting is still embryonic.
Regarding free-to-air, there are currently no legal requirements on broadcasters to facilitate citizen access to digital platforms, nor any measures to ensure its affordability. Regulatory pressure has been applied to commercial broadcasters, but state broadcasters have been criticized for failing to take a leadership role in driving the switch-over.
The report suggests that the development of the mobile sector offers the best hope for bridging regional and social divides in the medium term. But the enduring significance of these divides presents the most profound obstacle to Nigerian society reaping the benefits of digital media in terms of increased diversity, openness, and access.
John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation;
Since 2015, the MacArthur Foundation's Big Bet On Nigeria is investing in efforts to reduce corruption in Nigeria by supporting Nigerian-led endeavors that strengthen transparency, accountability, and participation. Corruption, impunity, and lack of accountability in Nigeria have far-reaching impacts on access to and quality of public services, the well-being of Nigerians, and overall development. The On Nigeria strategy builds on Jonathan Fox's "sandwich" theory,1 which recognizes the importance of the combination of a push from below and a squeeze from above to effect change and sustain momentum. The push from below is the "voice"— representing citizens' actions to demand change and develop local solutions to corruption, while the squeeze from above is the "teeth"—representing the efforts of government and other high-level actors to develop and enforce laws and regulations, using incentives to discourage corruption and sanctions to punish it. The On Nigeria theory of change harnesses the "voice" of Nigerian citizens and the "teeth" of Nigerian public and private institutions, and combined with capacity building and collaboration, intends to address the problem of corruption in Nigeria.
The On Nigeria evaluation and learning framework seeks to answer three overarching evaluation questions: (1) How is the MacArthur Foundation's strategy contributing to changing transparency and accountability of government and private-sector actors? (2) How is the MacArthur Foundation's strategy contributing to changing social norms and citizens' behaviors related to corruption? and (3) What kinds of adaptation or changes are needed in the theory of change and/or strategy to achieve better results? The framework is designed to provide specific information related to On Nigeria's landscape, outcomes, impacts, and feedback on the strategy to assess progress and adapt the strategy as needed.
Mathematica Policy Research, Inc.;
There is growing recognition that youth need more than formal or vocational education to thrive in school, work, and life. They also need life skills - a set of cognitive, personal, and interpersonal strengths that position them for success in their lives and livelihoods. To leverage the growing momentum and give youth access to these vital tools for success, the Partnership to Strengthen Innovation and Practice in Secondary Education (PSIPSE) supports grantee partners testing diverse approaches to strengthening life skills. The PSIPSE commissioned an in-depth study of 18 projects in 7 countries, uncovering actionable lessons on how to design, implement, assess, and scale youth life skills programming in low- and middle-income countries. The study is intended for practitioners and government officials interested in building, improving, and expanding work around life skills, as well as donors looking to advance this field and provide useful guidance to their grantees.
Mathematica Policy Research, Inc.;
There is growing recognition that youth need more than academic knowledge to transition successfully into employment and adulthood (Dupuy et al. 2018). They also need "life skills," a set of cognitive, personal, and interpersonal strengths that position them for success in their lives and livelihoods. Life skills can enhance young people's agency and resilience, improve their psychosocial well-being, and predict a range of long-term outcomes, including health, job performance, and wages (Kwauk et al. 2018; OECD 2018, Kautz et al. 2014). The Partnership to Strengthen Innovation and Practice in Secondary Education (PSIPSE), a donor collaborative, has invested in 18 projects to strengthen life skills in young people. This brief offers eight lessons based on the experiences of these projects—on the design, delivery, measurement, and scale-up of youth life skills programming in lowand middle-income countries (LMICs).
Mathematica Policy Research, Inc.;
There is growing recognition that youth need more than academic knowledge and technical expertise to transition successfully into employment and adulthood (Dupuy et al. 2018). They also need "life skills," a set of cognitive, personal, and interpersonal strengths that position them for success in their lives and livelihoods. Life skills can enhance young people's agency and resilience, improve their psychosocial well-being, and predict a range of long-term outcomes, including health, job performance, and wages (Kwauk et al. 2018; OECD 2018; Kautz et al. 2014). The Partnership to Strengthen Innovation and Practice in Secondary Education (PSIPSE), a donor collaborative, has invested in 18 projects that focus on developing life skills among youth (see left). Mathematica, the PSIPSE's learning partner, recently conducted an in-depth study of these projects. The study used interviews with implementing organizations, an extensive review of project documents and evaluation reports, and high-level literature and landscape scans to examine project experiences, set them in context, and draw out lessons for a range of stakeholders. This brief summarizes the lessons for government officials—on how to successfully devise, roll out, scale, and strengthen life skills policies for youth in low-and middle-income countries (LMICs).
MasterCard Foundation, The;
This paper addresses the issue of education governance in SSA in an attempt to shed light on the status of and developments in this area with a focus on lessons learned from various efforts across the region and recommendations on how to strengthen governance of secondary education. The paper is intended to serve as a background paper on secondary education governance in SSA which will be used to contribute to a more comprehensive publication on secondary education in SSA and the future of work. The paper addresses two key topics under secondary education governance: 1) Accountability as an important aspect of education governance, and 2) the need for enhancing institutional capacity to collect and use educational statistics, and how effective use of data can support education governance. The authors identify several specific actionable recommendations to help policy makers in SSA countries, depending on the local context, implement improvements in the governance of their secondary education systems at central, provincial, and local levels
West Africa Civil Society Institute (WACSI);
Drug use in general is a topic that rarely features in Nigeria media outlets. The focus has mostly been on arrests and seizures of drugs by law enforcement agencies to show how well the government is doing in terms of fighting the "war on drugs". Aside specific global campaigns such as the Support Don't Punish Global Day of Action (26 June) , very few programmes and documentaries report and discuss drug use from a public health perspective. Even though the non-medical use of codeine has been occurring for the past decades in the country, it has rarely been discussed as much as now. The coverage helped to reveal how codeine-based products are smuggled out of pharmaceutical companies.
IIE Center for Academic Mobility Research & Impact;
The fourth report from our 10-year tracking study of the Ford Foundation International Fellowships Program (IFP), Transformational Leaders and Social Change provides important insights into the personal, organizational, community, and societal impacts of IFP alumni in Kenya, Nigeria, Palestine, and South Africa, drawn from the perspectives of 361 IFP alumni and local stakeholders.
The results of this study show that the program had a positive impact on participants, with alumni saying that their IFP experience increased their confidence, awareness, self-identity, commitment, leadership, career advancement despite challenges upon re-entry at the end of the fellowship. Some alumni returned to face career barriers endemic to their community and home region, such as high unemployment rates and other labor market challenges. At an organizational level, alumni and community stakeholders said that these organizations now have a stronger work ethic, consistency, transparency, and accountability since alumni returned to their home communities. Stakeholders also said that the alumni they work with are more reliable and committed to getting the job done.
Violence against women and girls is often perpetuated by practices defended by some community members on the basis of tradition, culture, religion or superstition. These include female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C) and early marriage. Such harmful traditional practices are underpinned by social norms, the rules of behaviour that people in a group adhere to because they believe that they are expected to do so and that others do so. In Nigeria, one in four women aged 15-49 has undergone FGM/C, and 48 percent of women aged 20-49 were married before the age of 18.
Enough, a worldwide Oxfam campaign, aims to replace harmful social norms with positive ones that promote gender equality and non-violence. To better understand which social norms perpetuate traditional practices in Nigeria and how they influence behaviour, Oxfam in Nigeria conducted formative research by interviewing 20 men and 20 women and analysing the results in a campaign design workshop with partner organizations and experts working on violence against women and girls. The findings will inform the development of the Enough campaign in Nigeria.
From the research and subsequent analysis in the workshop, four social norms were identified as drivers of the harmful traditional practices FGM/C and early marriage: A respectable woman marries early; A respectable woman is submissive to male authority; A suitable woman is not promiscuous; A woman is worth more as a wife than as a daughter. Women and girls who transgress these norms face four main kinds of sanction: peer pressure, condemnation, exclusion and force. Encouragingly, although the research found that respondents believe others still think it is appropriate to follow traditional practices, many of the respondents' own individual attitudes have already shifted - a first signifier of social norms change.
The protracted conflict in the Lake Chad Basin has cut off millions of women and men from their livelihoods, making them dependent on humanitarian assistance to survive. Much emphasis has been given to the stabilization agenda, with a focus on securitization. However, Oxfam's research in late 2017 showed that early recovery and livelihoods development are much needed and should be prioritized to promote resilience among crisis-affected communities, to reduce dependency on humanitarian aid, and ultimately to promote sustainable peace.
West Africa Civil Society Institute (WACSI);
This study examines the contemporary African philanthropic space in Nigeria and its role, opportunities and challenges for Nigeria's National development. Drawing from both primary and secondary sources, this paper argues that philanthropy has a long history in Nigeria and is embedded in the socio-cultural milieu of the people. African philanthropic infrastructures exist in both formal and informal forms and both the rich and the poor are involved in philanthropy in Nigeria. The changing socio-political trajectories in Nigeria particularly since the return to civil rule in 1999 and the astronomic surge in the number of High Net Worth Individuals have led to the establishment of philanthropic foundations by accomplished businessmen and women, sport personalities, politicians and community trusts to support the state in diverse development areas. The role of indigenous philanthropists in Nigeria can be gleaned from their interventions in health, youth and women empowerment, provision of relief materials during disasters, postconflict reconstruction and peace building, democratic consolidation, national integration through social capital, promotion of social justice, education, advocacy, among others. Special focus was placed on Dangote Foundation, T.Y. Danjuma and DSK Foundation. In spite of the enormous role and opportunities in this sector, the Nigerian philanthropic space is plagued by numerous challenges including: lack of coordination, poor regulatory framework, weak capacity development and leadership training for future philanthropic managers, paucity of data and research, founders' sit-tight syndrome and an unfavourable legal environment. The study recommends that the development and transformation of contemporary indigenous philanthropic infrastructure in Nigeria can be attained through qualitative and quantitative research on: the changes and continuities in the field; the initiation of capacity and leadership development programmes for practitioners (philanthrocrats); existing self-regulatory mechanisms and alliances among philanthropic foundations; deepening state-philanthropy partnership through enabling legal and institutional frameworks. In the wake of dwindling foreign aid, this study recommends that indigenous philanthropy serves as a viable tool for domestic resource mobilisation in addressing the contemporary development challenges in Nigeria.