Preferred Name

Geary Cox, II

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.


Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


School of Strategic Leadership Studies


Margaret F. Sloan


Leaders of international nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) must contend with multiple accountability regimes while balancing responsibilities to stakeholders. While many accountability mechanisms are donor-led, this study sought to understand the capacity that NGOs have as agents of change to influence measurement and evaluations activities. The study focused on NGO applications submitted to a donor-government during competitive award announcements for conventional weapons destruction activities.

Using a parallel convergent mixed methods approach, this study examined the ways in which NGO leaders develop their organizations’ capacity to implement long-term impact assessments. A direct entry logistic regression of applications showed evidence of organizational characteristics influencing the inclusion of such assessment activities in response to a stated donor-government objective. Textual analysis of these applications helped build a more robust understanding of how the community of practice proposed to develop and deploy impact assessments.

This study found a field engaged in active conversation about measuring impact and highlights the changing power dynamics in the traditional donor/NGO relationship. Opportunities for future research and limitations of the study are discussed. The results of the investigation have important implications for researchers and practitioners in the field, including ways NGO leaders can use a collaborative process to demonstrate accountability, improve strategic planning, develop internal capacity, and substantiate impact.



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