skip to Main Content


Promoting Good Donorship

About Good Donorship

In the development (and humanitarian) domain, funds origin from tax payers (and/or voluntary contribution of citizens). They are managed by donors (or resource partners) who establish and follow their strategies and procedures, and are used by implementing agencies (Civil Society Organisations, International Organisations, NGOs) for the benefit of target beneficiaries.
Within this framework, all stakeholders are requested to operate for the best use of funds and for a stronger and tangible impact of actions.

However, it is quite clear that beneficiaries and tax payers play a very limited role and “implementers” are de facto in conflict between the pressure to operate at the very best and the urgent need to secure resources for their sustainability. Ipso facto the role of donors becomes particularly relevant and goes well beyond the simple task of passing-through of funds. Strategies, selection procedures and financial arrangements are not neutral, and have a great impact on how money is conveyed into an action, on how valuable projects (and organisations) may further continue their activities and on how – and to what extent – implementing organisations shall invest time and money in administrative work.

Within this context, punto.sud is firmly convinced that donors’ involvement in the international development / humanitarian sectors has a substantial room for improvement. Donors, in fact, could play a better resource-partner role if they improve their capacity to manage stronger evidence-based programming, to elaborate more efficient and reliable grant mechanisms and funding opportunities and to develop more sustainable partnerships with implementing agencies and target beneficiaries.

punto.sud identified four priorities:

  • Promote a donor culture, where the selection of priorities is carried out based on sound and reliable (evidence-based) evaluation studies to measure achievements and identify best and bad practices;
  • Elaborate innovative funding mechanisms and develop result-oriented partnerships among implementing agencies, donors and beneficiaries;
  • Elaborate procedures for an accountable and responsible management of funds, responding to the cost-effectiveness and result-based management principles;
  • Facilitate the co-operation between donor agencies (resource partners) and implementing agencies.

About punto.sud Engagement

During the years, punto.sud has had the opportunity to share ideas and promote actions with several resource partners. With the European Commission’s departments of DG ECHO and DG EuropeAid, punto.sud has been working for years to facilitate the interaction between the EC and the implementing agencies (NGOs, UN Agencies and International Organisations). With the Italian Civil Protection Department, punto.sud was actively engaged to develop and apply a full system for the correct use of funds (around 53 MEUR) allocated for the post-tsunami programme implemented in Sri Lanka in the years 2004 – 2010. With the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), punto.sud has been supporting this UN agency for many years in order to better co-operate with the EU. Other important tasks were also given to punto.sud in the definition of the impact of programmes such as the “country-programme” financed by Fondazione Cariplo and the Burkina Faso and Uganda programmes financed by Fondazioni 4 Africa. The testing of innovative tools for the selection of grant beneficiaries and the definition of long-term strategies in development programmes was also tested with Unicredit Foundation, the Autonomous Province of Trento and Fondazione Milano per l’EXPO 2015.

These activities have always been sustained by a continuous internal reflection and analysis on methods, approaches and tools which can realistically facilitate, from the donor side, the implementation of programmes, including realistic monitoring, utilization-focused evaluation and audit.

Our experience can be described as follows:

  • Supporting the donor’s management in setting up a strategy for funding;
  • Development of procedures for grants and contracts management (including procedures for the selection, awarding, monitoring and auditing of grants/contracts), in line with the most accepted international standards;
  • Ad hoc activities and tools (mainly training courses, distance learning, manuals, web-tools and IT applications) to support the working staff of donors and/or implementing agencies, in order to ensure the implementation of grants and/or contracts in compliance with the donor’s rules and procedures;
  • Elaboration of innovative granting schemes enabling potential partners (and donors) to reduce the overall administrative costs and to increase the cost-effectiveness of funded actions;
  • Screening and evaluation of proposals within a specific call for proposal and/or call for tender;
  • Setting up of monitoring and evaluation mechanisms of programs / projects financed by donors focusing on clear tangible and cost-effective impact, including randomised control trials for impact-evaluation (see also Studies, Research and Evaluation).

Related Projects

punto.sud Fields of Intervention


If you have any question, please contact the responsibile of the Cooperation and Development Department (Mr. Federico Bastia) at


View Projects
Back To Top