Faith-Inspired Organizations and Global Development: A Background Review "Mapping" Social and Economic Development Work in South and Central Asia

January 9, 2011

This report focuses on the diverse array of development activities involving faith-inspired organizations. Its primary focus is by country, for South and Central Asia respectively; the two regions are very distinct but interconnected in significant and very relevant ways. The aim is to increase awareness of the important and widespread work being done, and to help catalyze efforts to bridge gaps in policy and coordination. The overall goal is to increase development effectiveness, bringing into the picture important areas of unaccounted for and unacknowledged work. The report served as the background for a January 10-11, 2011 consultation, held in Dhaka, that convened scholars and practitioners for a discussion on the role of faith-inspired practitioners and organizations on issues of global development and equity in South and Central Asia.
The report is based largely on desk reviews of existing material and literature, enriched by interviews with specialists and practitioners, and the outcomes of the January 2011 Dhaka consultation. The review’s fairly limited range of investigation limits the scope for broad generalizations. It builds on the most comprehensive body of literature on the intersection of religion and development, produced under the recently concluded University of Birmingham Research Programme on Religions and Development (see appendix 2).

This initiative is part of the global mapping of faith-inspired organizations in development work sponsored by the Luce/SFS Program on Religion and International Affairs, the Berkley Center, and the World Faiths Development Dialogue.

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