State-oriented service-delivery partnership with civil society organizations in the context of counter-terrorism in Nigeria

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

303 Downloads (Pure)



Little is known about how partnerships between the state and civil society organizations (CSOs) to deliver services as part of counter-terrorism measures (CTMs) work in practice; nor how CSOs make sense of such partnerships and their implications.

This article examines patterns in partnerships between the state and CSOs to deliver services. It investigates how CSOs perceive this partnership and the socio-political and policy implications.
Approach and Methods

Faith-based, youth/children CSOs, women’s and human rights groups engaged in capacity building, technical assistance and advocacy in counter-terrorism operations in northeast Nigeria were studied. A mixed-method design was adopted to examine the experiences and perspectives of CSO managers and field staff, as well as the views of government officials, including security agents involved in counter-terrorism.

The state contracted the CSOs to deliver services, but not to engage in political advocacy. Thus, the state controlled the political realm and influenced the non-political arena. CSOs believed that the service-delivery partnership impinged on their organizational principles and capacity to demand government accountability and transparency.
Policy implications

CSOs should be engaged as vital and equal partners in addressing security issues. Excluding advocacy-oriented CSOs from security measures is counter-productive. It potentially silences public demands for transparency, accountability and justice, thereby entrenching insecurity and impinging on humanitarian interventions. Restricting CSOs to service delivery undercuts their ability to connect government and society.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-16
Number of pages16
JournalDevelopment Policy Review
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 8 Oct 2020


  • state-civil society relations
  • Service-delivery
  • counter-terrorism
  • humanitarian intervention
  • development policy
  • security

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences(all)


Dive into the research topics of 'State-oriented service-delivery partnership with civil society organizations in the context of counter-terrorism in Nigeria'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this