Advocating Policy Concerns : Communication Strategies of NGOs
Author: Binit Gurung Publication Type: Policy Discussion Paper 

The Advocacy NGOs in Nepal tend to downplay the significance of strategic communication in their advocacy initiatives. Since NGOs operate in a policy environment characterized by a host of interest groups and a web of complex and changing power dynamics, it necessitates a planned communication strategy on the part of the Advocacy NGOs to better engage with the policy makers/decision makers and the stakeholders at large. Based on this premise, the paper begins with the exploration of the complementary relationship between advocacy and communication by reviewing relevant literature. By studying the advocacy communication practices of the women‟s rights NGOs and the transitional justice NGOs in different parts of the country, the paper explains and analyses the state and the nature of communication planning and practices of the NGOs in Nepal. Concomitantly, the paper also attempts to explain the reasons behind the existing nature of the practices. The study shows how, despite the lackadaisical attitude of the NGOs to the whole notion of communication strategy, different communication tools and techniques do figure prominently albeit non-strategically in the advocacy initiatives launched by the Advocacy NGOs. In light of the findings and the analysis, the paper ends with a number of recommendations that may help the NGOs to improve their advocacy outcomes by focusing more on communication strategies.