Evolution and Evaluation of a Non-Governmental Organization in Southeastern Madagascar: A Case Study of Azafady
Menard, Nicole L.
International environmental organizations in Madagascar have been criticized for using their power and influence to prioritize biodiversity protection over the needs of the Malagasy population. In this thesis, I examine these claims and evaluate the nongovernmental organization (NGO) of Azafady in southeastern Madagascar through interviews, textual analysis, and participant observation. The administrative structure reflects a cross-cultural element, and funding from an international "volun-tourism" program significantly contributes to the implementation of Azafady's projects. Despite this international influence, interviews with Azafady staff and Malagasy project participants reveal that this NGO determines their goals according to priorities expressed by Malagasy residents. My data also show the importance of evaluation methods that include participant feedback and can illuminate disparity in perceptions of project results. Azafady exemplifies an exception to the rule of "coercive conservation" in Africa and signals effective ways to approach conservation and development in Madagascar.