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HomeNGOs in Haiti - towards new explanatory paradigms

NGOs in Haiti - towards new explanatory paradigms

Les ONG en Haïti : vers de nouveaux paradigmes explicatifs

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Published on Thursday, August 20, 2015


La revue Chantiers, revue des sciences humaines et sociales de l'université d'État d'Haïti lance un appel à contribution portant sur les ONG en Haïti. Ce prochain numéro essayera de saisir les contours du phénomène, tant du point de vue ontologique, dialectique qu'historique. Il sera aussi question de voir son impact sur la société haïtienne dans sa globalité.



In a special edition of Chantiers (UEH’s Social Science and Human Sciences journal), we are looking to understand all aspects of NGOs in Haiti. More and more, certainly during moments of “crisis”, NGOs play important roles in “developing” countries, certainly in Haiti, and certainly after January 12 they play a central role. Haiti was renamed “the Republic of NGOs.” As we all know, January 12th marks an important chapter in Haiti’s history, with the implantation of “humanitarian” NGOs. Institutional weakness and lack of functioning systems made them more powerful. They almost control the entire country.

Different stages to understand a range of theories on NGOs in Haiti

After 1986, and certainly after 1991, many texts have been written on NGOs (such as Mathurin et al, Suzy Castor, HAVA, ak AQOCI) expressing a hope in this structure for their democratization roles.

But after a few years, this hope was crushed. Many Haitians criticize the way they act in the country. Some have discussed an “NGO class” that enjoys many privileges. After the return of President Aristide in 1994, many NGOs came, what Sauveur Pierre Etienne called an “invasion.” After Aristide’s second forced departure in 2004, the interim period saw another wave of NGOs, becoming more forceful after Hurricane Jeanne in 2004, the kriz lavi chè a and a battery of four hurricanes in 2008 forced the doors wide open. In this period, Janil Lwijis’ text, ONG: Ki Gouvènman Ou Yè?appeared to push the debate further: NGOs have an imperialist character. They weaken the Haitian state while they implant capitalism in local communities.

January 12 clearly showed the urgent necessity to better understand, coordinate, and regulate these private institutions. The 1989 decree recognized NGOs that say they work in “development” while most of NGO activities of that period were “humanitarian” aid. This showed the necessity to rethink the legal framework, one of the main stakes in the « Premyè Fowòm Nasyonal sou ONG » that UCAONG organized in October 2013.

What framework or theory best explains today’s situation?

Are these models useful to understand the current situation? What changes to the main theoretical currents would be necessary to better grasp today’s realities? Or should we begin thinking about a new series of conceptualizing NGOs? Or, is this current moment, five years after one of the worst tragedies that brought about one of the biggest humanitarian efforts, wherein this invasion appears to be ending, where INGOs are starting to leave, not too different from previous moments in the country’s history?

Submission guidelines

We are looking for articles that push the envelope on these problems. We are looking for case studies, field-based studies, historical studies, and theoretical/dialectical/philosophical articles. The articles can be written in French, Creole, English, or Spanish. Articles must be between 15-25 pages.

If you are interested, please send a proposal, explanation, or other elements, ideally sending a 200-word abstract 

by August 30. 

Please send them via email: revue.chantiers@ueh.edu.ht or jamesr.saintcyr@gmail.com

If the editorial board accepts your proposal, you must submit your full article by October 30.


  • Mark Schuller

Associate professor/Professeur associé

Anthropology and Center for NGO leadership and development

Northern Illinois University

Faculté d'ethnologie, Université d'Etat d'Haïti


  • Sunday, August 30, 2015


  • ONG, Haïti, institution


  • James Saint cyr
    courriel : revue [dot] chantiers [at] ueh [dot] edu [dot] ht

Information source

  • James Saint cyr
    courriel : revue [dot] chantiers [at] ueh [dot] edu [dot] ht


CC0-1.0 This announcement is licensed under the terms of Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal.

To cite this announcement

« NGOs in Haiti - towards new explanatory paradigms », Call for papers, Calenda, Published on Thursday, August 20, 2015, https://doi.org/10.58079/t4w

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