While INGOs are known for having to balance competing demands in their quest for legitimacy, this article discusses a similar balancing act for local organisations working directly with communities in the field. Building on the social constructivist view that legitimacy is actor and context dependent, we examine how various parties perceive the legitimacy of three land rights advocacy organisations in Kenya. While regulatory and cognitive legitimacy have societal relevance, we found them to be of secondary importance to local communities, who primarily value pragmatic and political legitimacy sources such as adequate representation, demonstrable output, responsiveness, and visibility in the field.
|Number of pages||19|
|Journal||Canadian Journal of Development Studies = Revue canadienne d'études du développement|
|Early online date||8 Nov 2021|
|Publication status||Published - 2022|
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This study was supported by WOTRO Science for Global Development, Nederlandse Organisatie voor Wetenschappelijk Onderzoek (Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research) (NWO) under Grant W 08.311.108, funded by the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Research permission was obtained from Kenya's National Commission for Science, Technology and Innovation (P18/11005 /23680). We thank Marleen Dekker, Marja Spierenburg, Danny Wijnhoud, and three anonymous reviewers for their valuable input on earlier drafts of this article. We gratefully acknowledge the collaboration with ActionAid, both in the Netherlands and in Kenya, and particularly their local partner organisations that participated in the study.
© 2021 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.
- civil society
- land rights