Government-NGO Partnership in Community Development in Nepal: A Case of Kathmandu District

Abstract: 
Over the past two decades, Nepal has expressed increasing concern over the welfare of the masses and focus has shifted towards more people-centered and community-led approach to development in partnership with non-government organizations (NGOs). In this context, this study is structured around two main questions: Is the existing government-NGO partnership effective in facilitating community development at the local level? To what extent do the existing programs adopted by the government and NGOs support community development at the local level? Mixed research design was employed for the study. The study draws upon the theoretical insights of social capital theory and qualitative and quantitative data collected to test the theory. Research shows that existing partnership between the government and NGOs does not seem to be effective in achieving the expected results. Although the existing programs adopted by the government and NGOs seem to support community development, the extent of their support depends on the influence of local politics. The findings are in line with the findings of Mattessich, Murray-Close, and Monsey (2001) and Asaduzzaman (2008).
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Main Article: 

Introduction
The thinking and practice of development studies, and policies have been transformed over time all over the world. In the 1950s and 1960s, modernization and economic growth theories dominated the field of development studies. However, many developing countries failed to achieve self-development and economic equality in the society despite a sustained economic growth rate (Bongartz & Dahal, 2008). In the 1970s and early 1980s, NGOs emerged, as a force for influencing national policies in favor of the poor for providing services that weakened states could not. NGOs developed a strong sense of autonomy and have emerged as an important strategy in the process of developmental activities (Cardelle, 1998). Since the 1980s, most of the developing countries have transferred some of their economic activities and basic services to NGOs, which are now considered partners in governance (Haque, 2004). In the 1990s, community participation, capacity building and community empowerment evolved in a new level (Binswager-Mkhize, Anklesaria, & Regt, 2010). Since then, the role of NGOs has been considered vital in the development process across the developing world.
In the context of Nepal, visible form of community development approach was introduced in 1951 under the name of village development (Pyakuryal, n.d.). Since the Eighth Five Year Plan (1992-1997), government of Nepal (GoN) has recognized Nepalese NGOs as a partner in local and community development and policies and programs have also been adopted in the subsequent plans (National Planning Commission [NPC], 1992). Similarly, the article 51 and 121 of Local Self-governance Act (LSGA) have also provisioned that village development committees and municipalities encourage NGOs for the act of identification, formulation and maintenance of the village and town development within their areas (Ministry of Law, 1999). The GoN aims to develop NGOs as a new sector and has emphasized the importance of community based development through NGOs by taking them as development partners.
With respect to this Nepalese scenario, the study sought to answer two main questions: Is the existing government-NGO partnership effective in facilitating community development at the local level? To what extent do the existing programs adopted by the government and NGOs support community development at the local level? The main thrust of this study was to gain new insights in this area and to some extent, to contribute to overcome the dearth of empirical evidence to make informed decisions.
Review of Literature and Analytical Framework
In this section, literature related to community development and the government-NGO partnership is reviewed so as to provide a background of the study, to identify the relevant variables and to formulate an analytical framework for the study.
Community Development
The term ‘community’ is understood from different perspectives: as a territory or a place, social organizations or institutions and social interaction on matters concerning a common interest (Parada, Barnoff, Moffatt & Homan, 2010); as a distinctive entity sharing a defined physical space, common traits, and a sense of belongingness (Azarya, 2005); as a grouping of people residing in a specific locality and exercising some degree of local autonomy in organizing their social life (Edwards & Jones,1976 quoted in Swanepoel & Beer, 2006). In general, community is understood as a geographical place of a natural human interconnectedness where people live together, share some commonalities, share some common purposes and view themselves as distinct from others.
Community development is about achieving social and political change by raising capacity of local people through the development of skills and knowledge to address their own needs (Heenan & Birrell, 2011; Homan, 2011; Jayapalan, 2001); promoting social justice (Gilchrist & Taylor, 2011); and developing and enhancing the ability of a community to act collectively as well as an outcome (Philips & Pittman, 2009). The Budapest Declaration, a conference held in Hungary in 2004, conceptualizes community development as a way of strengthening civil society by prioritizing the actions of communities. Community development strengthens the capacity of people as active citizens through their community groups (quoted in Craig, 2005, p. 3). More specifically, Homan (2011) emphasizes three components of community development viz. capacity building, asset building, and ownership building, and Staples (2004) also highlights three goals of community development: problem solution, capacity building and the development of social solidarity-the ties that bind (p.8). A brief review of existing literature of community development shows that capacity building of community is the core aspect of community development.

Community Capacity Building
Labonte and Laverack (2001) have presented nine dimensions of community including community participation. More comprehensively, Goodman et al. (1998) highlight 10 dimensions of community capacity and their fundamental characteristics resulting from a symposium viz. participation, leadership, skills, resources; social and inter-organizational networks, sense of community, community power, community values, understanding of community history and critical reflection. In this study, only the community participation dimension--a core aspect of community development was taken into consideration.

Community Participation
Development is people's business. Development without people's participation is like a wheel without spokes. Participation presupposes belongingness and culminates in control and ownership of the people (Bhose, 2003, p. 131). Similarly, at a community level, power is participation and participation is power (Castelloe, Watson & White, 2002). These views reflect the key theme of community participation that is the people are the means as well as end of the development. The concept of community participation in rural and local development has been recognized as an essential component since the early 1950s (Schubeler, 1996). However, the concept got momentum in the development discourse in the 1960s as a result of the failure of top down approach to development and appeared in the scene in the 1970s as an alternative development discourse (Butcher, 2007; Mohanan, 2005).
Community development is an important dimension of development since development has been defined as the process by which powerless people in the society are freed from all forms of dependency and thereby express their full potential as human beings (Bhose, 2003). The ultimate goal of participation is to support and empower marginalized groups of the community since they need power to control over their own development and participates in the decisions that affect their lives (Castelloe, Watson & White, 2002). Asaduzzaman (2008) conducted a study in Bangladesh to explore a query on why, despite all the efforts, there was no genuine decentralization and people's participation in local development in Bangladesh. It was found from the study that people's participation was entrapped around the discourse of governance as merely an illusory vision due to strong political and bureaucratic intervention; formal, informal and invisible actors seriously jeopardize the theoretical application of people's participation.

Community Development in Nepal
After the restoration of democracy in 1990, the government of Nepal adopted a new approach to development. In the Eighth Plan (1992-1997), the government focused on social welfare sector to improve social, economic and physical conditions of the people and non-government organizations were taken as partner to upgrade the living standard of the socially and economically excluded sections of society (NPC, 1992). More recently, the GoN has lunched Local Governance and Community Development Program (LGCDP) as a national framework to support local governance and community development at all levels and by all stakeholders (Ministry of Local Development, 2008). Similarly, efforts to community development have been closely associated with rural development, participation at the local level and upliftment of the oppressed and neglected communities.

Partnership between Government and NGOs
Salamon (1987) discussed the phenomenon of government-nonprofit partnership in the context of the United States. He challenged the existing theories of the voluntary sector that is market failure, government failure and contract failure and introduced the theory of voluntary sector failure. He introduced the alternative conception of government-nonprofit partnership in the contemporary development discourse. Crowther and Trott (2004) point out that government wants to join in partnership because of difficulty to access parts of community and to gain specialized knowledge of potential partners. On the other hand, non-profit organizations are motivated in partnering to supplement declining revenues and to increase the organization's visibility in the community. A research study conducted in Georgia shows that nonprofit executives place a greater emphasis on acquiring new resources, whereas government executives express their interests in gaining professional expertise through partnership (Gazley & Brudney, 2007).
Various theories and models have been developed to explain the nature of collaboration between government and NGOs. Young (2006) describes three modes of relation between the government and the non-profit sector viz. Supplementary--two sectors work separately; complementary-their activities are connected; and adversaries- both sectors oppose one another. Similarly, Rajasekhar and Biradar (2004) discuss three types of collaboration between the government and NGOs: contractual collaboration, institutional collaboration and facilitative collaboration. Brehm (2001) asserts that effective partnerships are based on the effectiveness of the work, the quality of the relationship and clarity about the purpose of partnership. With respect to the effectiveness of partnership between public and civil society sectors, Koksarova's (2012) empirical study explored what constitutes effective partnership and how effectiveness is assessed in the process of partnership. The findings showed that different stages of partnership require different levels of compensation mechanisms from partnership participants to ensure that both actors maximize their strength while achieving their missions.
In Nepal various NGOs are working in the transformation process of the society. To develop NGOs/INGOs as partner in community based development and the government has adopted policies, long-term vision and different programs (NPC, 1997). The Social Welfare Council (SWC) was established in 1992 as an important high level coordinating public agency to govern NGOs/INGOs in Nepal. At local level, district development committees (DDCs) municipalities and village development committees (VDCs) have been entrusted to coordinate and encourage the activities of NGOs in their respective areas (Ministry of Law, 1999).

Knowledge Gap and Current Study
It seems that the existing literature is inconclusive to analyze the present situation of partnership between government and NGOs and to identify the factors that made it a success or failure. Similarly, none of the previous empirical studies have focused on the existing circumstances of people's participation in managing local affairs in the context of Nepal. This study was oriented to fulfill these lacunae in the existing literature.

Analytical Framework
On the basis of literature, two suppositions are postulated: First, the partnership between the government and NGOs is determined by three variables viz. core values and principles adopted in the partnership, nature of partnership between the government and NGOs and policy framework of the government regarding partnership with NGOs. Second, effective partnership between the government and NGOs enhances better community development in general and community participation in particular. The core values and principles such as clear goals and objectives, participatory decision making, mutual trust and common understanding in partnership determine the effectiveness of partnership. Similarly, modes or nature of collaboration such as complementary, collaborative and adversary have strong influence on partnership. Likewise, the procedures of formulation of laws, rules, policies and their appropriateness; implementation and monitoring of such existing laws determine the situation of partnership between the government and NGOs. Community development was measured in terms of community partici-pation.

Theoretical Consideration
The study draws upon the theoretical insights of the academic literature of social capital theory. In the contemporary sense, Lyda Hanifan used the term for the first time in 1920 to explain the role of community participation in shaping local educational outcomes (Mignone, 2009). Social capital is a capital captured through social relations and social networks that enhances the outcomes of actions, facilitates the flow of information and provides an individual with opportunities and choices (Lin, 2003). Participation in local networks and attitudes of mutual trust make it easier for any group to reach collective decisions and collective actions (Graootaert & Bastelaer, 2002). It encourages people to participate more actively in the political process as well as provide a strong base for the exploration of why neighborhood residents choose or fail to choose to participate (Hays & Kogl, 2007). More specifically, community participation focuses on the way of creating social capital that is efforts to strengthen the social norms, social supports, social trusts and social reciprocity.

Methodology
The study of the government-NGO partnership and their efforts to community development is a social phenomenon. Quantitative methods combined with qualitative techniques bring a new and fresh perspective to existing research (Weathington, Cunningham, & Pittenger, 2010). Therefore, a mixed research design was employed to produce a valid conclusion and to address the proposed research questions. Eleven NGOs involved in the community development in the 57 VDCs of Kathmandu district in collaboration with local government bodies were taken as universe of the study.
For the purpose of this study, nine NGOs and 18 VDCs were selected purposively. Quantitative data was obtained from 32 local government officials (known as VDC secretaries) and 32 responsible representatives of NGOs from the sample by using the structured questionnaire. During the field survey six face-to-face semi-structured interviews with the local government officials and five interviews with the representatives of the sampled NGOs were conducted to obtain necessary qualitative information. In addition, two cases of community development programs operating under the partnership between the government and NGOs were selected purposely and case analysis of the selected cases were done. Likewise, structured questionnaire and semi-structured interviews were also administered to address the issue of methodological triangulation.
For ensuring the reliability of the survey instrument and internal consistency of the test items, a correlation between the items (Cronbach's alpha) was calculated. The Cronbach's alpha value of this study was calculated as 0.803. In the social sciences, value at or above 0.7 is desirable (Andrew et al., 2011). Researcher was conscious to ensure proper ethical standard in all stages of the research process.

Analysis and Discussion
This section presents the analysis and discussion of data obtained from the government officials and NGOs. The lower mean value indicates more positive response of that alternative. Similarly, in three and five points Likert Scale, 2 and 3 are taken as standard mean values respectively for comparing the calculated mean values.

Government-NGO Partnership
To assess the effectiveness of partnership between the government and NGOs, three independent variables viz. core values and principles adopted in the part-nership, the nature of partnership and the existing legal framework to support partnership were examined.

Core Values and Principles in Partnership
The respondents were asked to answer six questions by choosing one alternative for each question out of three alternatives. Table 4.1 depicts the information collected from the respondents and their calculated statistical values in detail.

Table 4.1: Core Values and Principles in Partnership
Nature of Or-ganization Government NGOs
Alternatives Strongly agree Agree Disagree Total Strongly agree Agree Disagree Total
Clearly articu-lated goals F 12 14 6 32 14 16 2 32
% 37.5 43.8 18.7 100 43.8 50 6.2 100
M 1.81 1.63
SD 0.738 0.609
Committed shared leader-ship F 2 24 6 32 2 22 8 32
% 6.3 75 18.7 100 6.3 68.8 25 100
M 2.13 2.81
SD 0.492 0.535
Participatory decision making F 12 14 6 32 7 21 4 32
% 37.5 43.8 18.7 100 21.9 65.6 12.5 100
M 1.81 1.91
SD 0.738 0.588
Two way ex-change of infor-mation F 12 20 - 32 5 21 6 32
% 37.5 62.5 - 100 15.6 65.5 18.7 100
M 1.63 2.03
SD 0.492 0.595
Recognition of other as partner F 6 12 14 32 2 19 11 32
% 18.7 37.5 43.8 100 6.3 59.4 34.4 100
M 2.25 2.28
SD 0.762 0.581
Source: Field Survey, 2013

As shown in Table 4.1, 37.5 per cent of the government officials and 43.8 per cent of the respondents of NGOs strongly agreed that existing partnership be-tween the government and NGOs has clearly articulated goals and objectives. The respondents of NGOs showed more positive attitude regarding this (1.63 [GoN] < 1.81[NGOs]). However, the priority of the programs between the government and NGOs were found to be different as the government focuses on infrastructure and immediate needs while NGOs were more interested in organizing trainings and workshops.
As depicted in Table 4.1, a nominal i.e. 6.3 per cent of the respondents of both the government and NGOs strongly agreed that present partnership is led by a committed shared leadership. Since both the values of mean are greater than standard value 2, the committed shared leadership in the existing partnership between the government and NGOs is not found as required. More government officials (37.5%) than the representatives of local NGOs (21.9%) strongly agreed that the participatory decision-making is adopted in the partnership. Similarly, the government officials perceived the adoption of participatory decision-making in the existing partnership a bit more positively as indicated by mean value (1.81 < 1.91).
The majority of the respondents of both government bodies (62.5%) and NGOs (65.6%) agreed that there is a two-way exchange of information between government bodies and NGOs. In addition, the government officials were generally dissatisfied with NGOs as the latter, they mentioned do not contact them, maintain official works at their own home, and in reality they do not go to the community. The study shows that very few i.e. only 6.3 per cent (mean value 2.28) of the representatives of NGOs and 18.7 per cent (mean value 2.25) of government officials strongly agreed that government and NGOs recognize each other as partners. It shows that both the government and NGOs do not seem to accept each other as partners. One government official criticized the role of NGOs by mentioning, "they (NGOs) do not go in every part of the community because if they go they have to spend money. NGOs are not operated to spend money".

Nature of Relationship between Government and NGOs
Regarding the nature of relationship between the government and NGOs, three modes of relationship were taken into consideration. Table 4.2 shows in detail the responses provided by the respondents.
The researcher assumed that NGOs are involved in fulfilling the demands of the community left unmet by the government. A great majority (68.8%) of the representatives of NGO and only 31 per cent of the government officials supported the general assumption. However, the mean value 2.19 (greater than 2) illustrates that government officials did not support the assumption of the researcher. Similarly, as indicated in Table 4.2, more NGO representatives (43.8% and mean value 1.56) than government officials (25% and mean value 2) strongly agreed that their activities are coordinated.

Table 4.2: Nature of Relationship between the Government and NGOs
Nature of Organization Alternatives Nature of Partnership
NGOs are involved in fulfilling the de-mand left by the government The government and NGOs perform inter-related roles The government and NGOs tend to influ-ence and check to each other
F % M SD F % M SD F % M SD
Government Strongly agree 8 25 2.19 .821 8 25 2.00 .718 6 18.7 2.25 .762
Agree 10 31.3 16 50 12 37.5
Disagree 14 43.7 8 25 14 43.8
Total 32 100 32 100 32 100
NGOs Strongly agree 5 15.6 2.00 .568 14 43.8 1.56 .504 6 18.7 2.22 .751
Agree 22 68.8 18 56.3 13 40.6
Disagree 5 15.6 - - 13 40.6
Total 32 100 32 100 32 100
Source: Field Survey, 2013

Regarding the concerned reciprocal influence between government and NGOs, it was found that both the government and NGOs rejected that their activities were oriented towards influencing each other's activities since mean values are nearly similar (government=2.25 vs. NGOs=2.22) and greater than 2. Similarly, NGOs argued that they were involved in fulfilling those demands unfulfilled by the government. However, the government officials argued, "principally, local NGOs are established to fulfill the unsatisfied demand of the community but in practice we cannot observe that".

Legal Framework
The research sought to examine the procedures of formulation of laws, rules, policies and their appropriateness; implementation and monitoring of such existing laws that determine the situation of partnership between the government and NGOs.
Involvement of Stakeholders in the Process of Formulation of Laws and Policies
The detailed responses and calculated statistical values regarding the involvement of stakeholders are presented in the table 4.3. Findings showed that a relatively small portion (12.5%) of the government officials and relatively a small portion (18.7%) of the representatives of NGOs agreed that concerned stakeholders are involved in the process of formulation of laws and policies to regulate the partnership. The representatives of NGOs did not agree to the opinion of the government officials.

Table 4.3: Involvement of Stakeholders in the Process of Formulation of Law and Policies
Alternatives Nature of Organization
Government NGOs
F % M SD F % M SD
Strongly agree 4 12.5 2.44 2.25 - - 3.38 .942
Agree 14 43.5 6 18.7
Undecided 10 31.3 12 37.5
Disagree 4 12.5 10 31.3
Strongly disagree - - 4 12.5
Total 32 100 32 100
Source: Field Survey, 2013

Appropriateness of Existing Policies to Support Partnership
Table 4.4 shows the views of the participants regarding the appropriateness of existing policies about government-NGO partnership.

Table 4.4: Appropriateness of Existing Legal Framework to Support Part-nership
Alternatives Nature of Organization
Government NGOs
F % M SD F % M SD
Strongly agree 8 25 2.25 1.107 5 15.5 2.28 1.023
Agree 14 43.8 19 59.4
Undecided 6 18.7 4 12.5
Disagree 2 6.3 2 6.3
Strongly disagree 2 6.3 2 6.3
Total 32 100 32 100
Source: Field Survey, 2013

As Table 4.4 shows, 25 per cent of the government officials and 15.6 per cent of representatives of NGOs strongly agreed that existing policy framework is appropriate. If we observe the mean values of the responses, both the values are positive i.e. less than 3. Thus, we can conclude that existing policy framework is appropriate to regulate and facilitate partnership between the government and NGOs.
Implementation of Existing Policies and Laws in to Practice
Table 4.5 shows the responses of the participants regarding the implementation of existing policies and laws regarding government-NGO partnership.
Results show that only a small portion i.e. 12.5 per cent of the government officials and none of the representatives of NGOs strongly agreed that existing policy framework is properly implemented. Similarly, the mean value of the information provided by the government officials is quite low (M =2.81 < 3) both in terms of standard and as compared to NGOs (3.69). Similarly, the values of SD show that there is less variation in the responses provided by NGOs as compared to the government officials (government =1.256 > NGOs =.965).

Table 4.5: Implementation of Existing Laws and Policies in to practice
Alternatives Nature of Organization
Government NGOs
F % M SD F % M SD
Strongly agree 4 12.5 2.81 1.256 - - 3.69 .965
Agree 14 43.8 6 18.8
Undecided - - 3 9.4
Disagree 12 37.5 18 56.3
Strongly disagree 2 6.3 5 15.6
Total 32 100 32 100
Source: Field Survey, 2013

Feedback and Follow-up of Implementation of Existing Policy Framework
The final question under legal framework sought to find out whether there is a practice of monitoring and receiving feedback of implemented policies.

Table 4.6: Feedback and Follow up of Implementation of Existing Policy Framework
Alternatives Nature of Organization
Government NGOs
F % M SD F % M SD
Strongly agree 2 6.3 3.81 1.030 4 12.5 3.50 1.164
Agree - - 1 3.1
Undecided 8 25 6 18.8
Disagree 14 43.8 17 53.1
Strongly disagree 8 25 4 12.5
Total 32 100 32 100
Source: Field Survey, 2013

As stated in Table 4.6, findings show that a very few of the respondents of both the government (6.3 %) and NGOs (12.5 %) strongly agreed that implemented policies are properly monitored and feedback is received. The result of the field survey shows that the values of mean based on the responses provided by the government officials (3.81 > 3) and NGOs (3.50 >3) which is quite high shows feedback mechanism and process of follow up of implemented policies are weak.
Problems of Existing Partnership between the Government and NGOs
The respondents under study were asked to rank the types of problems being faced by the existing partnership between the government and NGOs on priority basis (from 1 to 5). Table 4.7 shows the analysis of the responses.

Table 4.7: Problems of Existing Partnership between the Government and NGOs
Causes/Factors Total Aggregated Value Overall Rank
Government NGOs Government NGOs
Legal constraints 108 116 5 5
Complicated and unnecessary formalities 94 103 3 3
Lack of awareness in the community 104 111 4 4
Mutual mistrust and misunderstanding 88 93 2 2
Local level politics 86 57 1 1
Source: Field Survey, 2013

As illustrated in Table 4.7, local level politics in the community activity and mutual mistrust and misunderstanding between the partners (between government and NGOs) seem to be the major constraints for facilitating effective partnership between the government and NGOs in the community development programs.
Community Participation
Components Adopted in the Community Participation
The purpose of this query was to find out whether the components, that are considered fundamental for effective community participation, were adopted by the government and NGOs in their programs. Table 4.8 shows the analysis of the responses obtained from the participants.
First, the participants were asked to what extent their efforts to community participation are guided by certain objectives. Both the mean values are very low as compared to standard value of mean i.e. 3 (1.5 < 3 and 1.41 < 3) showing that efforts for community participation are guided by objectives. Similarly, the survey results show that 43.8 per cent of the government officials and the majority (59.4%) of the representatives of NGOs strongly agreed that they identify local conditions and needs of the community. The means values (1.69 government officials and 1.66 NGO representatives) indicate that programs are designed based on the identification of the needs of the target communities. Likewise, 37.5 per cent of the government officials and 46.9 per cent of the representatives of NGOs strongly agreed that they search for alternative means for effective community participation. Similarly, the result illustrates that the mean values of the information provided by the government (1.89) and NGOs (1.97) are also low that is less than 3. In same way, 50 per cent of the government officials and a majority (59.4%) of the representatives of NGOs strongly agreed that they educate community members and residents to understand their own problems. Though mean values show that are quite low (2.0 and 1.41), NGOs seem to give more priority to educating community residents to understand their problems.

Table 4.8a: Components Adopted in the Community Participation in government organizations
Alternatives Strongly agree Agree Undecided Disagree Strongly disagree Total
We determine the objective of participation F 22 4 6 - - 32
% 68.8 12.5 18.8 - - 100
M 1.5
SD 0.803
We identify local condition and needs of the community F 14 14 4 - - 32
% 43.8 43.8 12.5 - - 100
M 1.69
SD 0.693
We search for alternatives for participation F 12 14 6 - - 32
% 37.5 43.8 18.8 - - 100
M 1.81
SD 0.738
We educate community to understand their problems F 16 4 10 - 2 32
% 50 12.5 31.3 - 6.3 100
M 2
SD 1.19
We persuade and motivate members to mobilize community resources F 14 4 10 2 2 32
% 43.8 12.5 31.3 6.3 6.3 100
M 2.19
SD 1.26

The findings also show that 43.8 per cent of government officials and the great majority (81.3%) of the representatives of local NGOs strongly agreed that they motivate community members to mobilize community resources. Thus, with respect to the five components, the study findings indicate that both government and NGOs adopt fundamental components to promote community participation. NGOs' representatives highlighted that 'in the process of selecting the programs the local political elites and the leaders of the community play greater roles. So, they have to convince them first before launching any program in the community'. Similarly, barring some exceptions, it was found that local political influence plays important role in the formation of committees. Government officials clearly pointed out that because of the absence of elected local political bodies, political parties and political cadres want to use community groups and committees for their political purpose. It was also found that, despite statutory provisions of involvement of all stakeholders in the process of identification, prioritization, selection, implementation and evaluation of the programs in the community, external influences especially the local politics play greater role in these activities.

Table 4.8b: Components Adopted in the Community Participation in NGOs
Alternatives Strongly agree Agree Unde-cided Disa-gree Strongly disagree Total
We determine the objective of participation F 19 13 - - - 32
% 59.4 40.6 - - - 100
M 1.41
SD 0.499
We identify local condition and needs of the community F 19 9 2 - 2 32
% 59.4 28.1 6.3 - 6.3 100
M 1.66
SD 1.07
We search for alternatives for participation F 15 8 6 1 2 32
% 46.9 25 18.8 3.1 6.3 100
M 1.97
SD 1.18
We educate community to understand their problems F 19 13 - - - 32
% 59.4 40.6 - - - 100
M 1.41
SD 0.499
We persuade and motivate members to mobilize com-munity resources F 26 4 2 - - 32
% 81.3 12.5 6.3 - - 100
M 1.25
SD 0.568
Source: Field Survey, 2013

Constraints and Challenges Adversely Affecting the Community Participation
Table 4.9 presents constraints and challenges adversely affecting the community participation, based on the responses of the participants.

Table 4.9: Constraints and Challenges Adversely Affecting the Community Participation
Factors Total Aggregated Value Overall Rank
Government NGOs Government NGOs
Lack of effective government policy: 92 86 3 3
Lack of awareness in the community: 80 78 1 2
Lack of sense of volunteerism in the community: 114 119 5 4
Ethnic or regional discrimination in the community: 112 122 4 5
Negative effect of local politics: 82 75 2 1
Source: Field Survey, 2013

As shown in Table 4.9, the participants were provided with five factors and were requested to rank them on the basis of priority (from 1 to 5). The result shows that both the government officials and representatives of NGOs provided more or less similar responses. The government officials pointed out the ‘lack of awareness’ and ‘negative effect of local politics’ as the first and second constraints respectively. Similarly, the representatives of NGOs ranked ‘negative effect of local politics’ and ‘lack of awareness in the community’ the first and the second cause respectively hampering meaningful community participation. They suggested that local level politics in the community activity need be taken into consideration for meaningful community development.

Conclusion
The overall findings of the study show that existing partnership between the government and NGOs is guided by clear goals and objectives and participatory decision making procedures. Similarly, the efforts of the government and NGOs are coordinated and connected to each other and they are not oriented to influence each other's activities. The existing policy framework is appropriate to facilitate partnership between the government and NGOs.
Despite these positive aspects of partnership, NGOs perceive that they are not being treated as partners by the government. The government does not trust them and their activities. Similarly, recognition of the other party as partner, a core aspect of partnership, is not found at satisfactory level. In addition, contradictory views are found between the government and NGOs regarding the involvement of NGOs in community activities. Regarding the policy framework, NGOs do not accept that they are involved in the formulation of the policies. Monitoring of implemented laws is hardly made, and feedback mechanism is very weak. Furthermore, mutual mistrust and misunderstanding between the government and NGOs and local level politics in the community activity seemed to be another major constraint in facilitating effective partnership between government and NGOs in the community development programs.
Mattessich, Murray-Close, and Monsey (2001) from their meta-analysis of 40 research studies aimed at answering a question: what factors influence the success of collaborative efforts among organizations in the human services, government, and other nonprofit fields? They identified favorable political and social climate; mutual respect, understanding and trust; ability to compromise; clear roles and policy guidelines; shared vision; and skilled leadership among others requisite for effective partnership (quoted in Koksarova, 2012 p. 69). If we compare the results of this study in the light of the Mattessich, Murray-Close, and Monsey (2001), the existing government-NGO partnership seems to be quite ineffective. Thus, with respect to the first research question, the researcher came to the conclusion that the existing partnership between the government and NGOs does not seem to achieve desirable results as expected.
With respect to the second question, the findings of the study show that the components adopted by the government and NGOs seem to be orientated towards promoting community development in general and community participation in particular. Nevertheless, the study reveals that local political interference in community affairs has been a serious problem for both the government and NGOs in realizing their objectives. This finding is in line with the findings of an in-depth empirical study conducted by Asaduzzaman (2008) in Bangladesh who concluded that excessive political intervention and partisanship have made the local public institutions dysfunctional and unable to promote people's participation and provide benefits of decentralization to the people at grassroots level (p. 168). On the basis of this observation, it can be concluded that although programs being adopted by the government and NGOs seem to be effective, to what extent their programs are supportive to enhance community development is determined by the strength of influence of local politics.

Scope for Further Research
First, the study was limited to the perceptions of the representatives of the gov-ernment bodies and NGOs. To increase the validity of the findings, the percep-tions of the community members by adopting community approach for better understanding, the contribution of the government and NGOs should also be taken into consideration. Similarly, future studies should be conducted in other parts of the country by increasing the number of participants since given the limitation of time and resources the sample of the study was relatively small. Despite these limitations, the study is hoped to be valuable in understanding and thereby taking constructive measure to promote government-NGO partnership in Nepal.