Lebanon is in the middle of a crisis. The proximity of fighting and the influx of refugees is challenging. Nonetheless proper political processes should be in place and holding successful local elections would be an important step for the country. While support to Lebanon to manage the refugee crisis and the defence issues is vital the international community should also encourage the development of local democratic institutions.
Of course I know that 'Charity Does A Good Job' and 'No Governance Concerns At Charity' are not juicy headlines, but what I take from all of this is that it seems that most people writing (and reading?) about charities don't actually know much about charities, about the reality of running a charity, working in a charity, or receiving services or support from a charity.
Contrary to the criticism it has received, last week's plans in the education bill that all underachieving and coasting schools will be converted into academies is one that should be welcomed. Far too much scaremongering has accompanied the bill thus far with far too little reference to the positives.
The charity and wider voluntary and community sector faces many challenges, most of which originate externally. However, I do fear that an unfortunate proportion (hopefully not too large a proportion)of these challenges are self-generated, and of these, it seems to me that far too many stem from within these organisations' executive and trustee leadership teams.
Dan Pallota asked the staggering question - what if everything we've been taught about charity is dead wrong? What if tools like ACC can help us go beyond just financial metrics but understand real impact, reward charities with the biggest accomplishments and support those who need it? Wouldn't the world be a better place?
Corruption is not just a cost; it is a curse that deeply affects individuals as well as the state system. It is the single most important obstacle to economic growth and development. It is devastating for investment and growth on the one hand, and denies the poor of equal opportunity and basic services, on the other.
Youth unemployment levels cannot be wholly improved without effective policy by national governments, nor education in our schools that needs to adapt to the requirements of the 21st century. Arguably, global business will struggle to become more responsible without an element of legislative steer too.
Last week, the UN High Level Panel issued its recommendations for a framework to replace the Millennium Development Goals after they come to an end in 2015.
There is a role that we all have to play in responding to the changing skills needs that we will continue to face, and the diversity of the sector will mean that different organisations will need to reflect on these broader themes and identify priorities and appropriate solutions that work for them.
What has gone wrong? Why can't we get our act together? Although a number of factors contribute to this quagmire, it is the misuse and abuse of three attributes of state governance that is the root cause of many of the problems we face today - politics, democracy, and accountability are the most widely misunderstood words in the country.