Start Date

30-4-2021 12:00 AM

Document Type

Poster Session

Department

Leadership and Organizational Studies

Faculty Mentor

Joyce Gibson, PhD

Keywords

global leadership, neocolonialism, development, Tanzania, expatriate, non-governmental organizations, Africa, local, perceptions

Abstract

The purpose of this phenomenological study is to understand the perceptions that Tanzanian employees hold about white, expatriate leadership of non-governmental organizations working on children’s issues in Tanzania, East Africa. In Tanzania, foreign non-profit organizations, commonly referred to locally as NGOs, work to address various global issues. Many NGOs are led by white, expatriate leaders while staffed by local, black, Tanzanians. Through interviews with Tanzanian staff, this study helps determine whether the presence of white, expatriate leadership of NGOs in Tanzania is truly an effective approach to development as perceived by local staff. Interviews were conducted virtually with five Tanzanian employees who are currently employed by or who have previously worked under the leadership of white, expatriate leaders. Participants were identified through the researcher's personal network after living in Tanzania for 11 years and through an intermediary. This research may be useful to a variety of groups, including NGOs and NGO leadership and could lead to the formation of best practices for these leaders. The research may also be useful for any NGO or business looking to empower local leadership. Lastly, the research will help a broad audience better understand the perception held about white, expatriate leadership in NGOs working on children’s issues in Tanzania within the broader context of African leadership theories, NGOs’ roles in perpetuating neocolonialism, and passive forms of white supremacy (e.g., white, expatriate leadership in African NGOs).

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Apr 30th, 12:00 AM

Perceptions About Expatriate Leaders in Tanzanian Non-Governmental Organizations: Elevating Local Voices

The purpose of this phenomenological study is to understand the perceptions that Tanzanian employees hold about white, expatriate leadership of non-governmental organizations working on children’s issues in Tanzania, East Africa. In Tanzania, foreign non-profit organizations, commonly referred to locally as NGOs, work to address various global issues. Many NGOs are led by white, expatriate leaders while staffed by local, black, Tanzanians. Through interviews with Tanzanian staff, this study helps determine whether the presence of white, expatriate leadership of NGOs in Tanzania is truly an effective approach to development as perceived by local staff. Interviews were conducted virtually with five Tanzanian employees who are currently employed by or who have previously worked under the leadership of white, expatriate leaders. Participants were identified through the researcher's personal network after living in Tanzania for 11 years and through an intermediary. This research may be useful to a variety of groups, including NGOs and NGO leadership and could lead to the formation of best practices for these leaders. The research may also be useful for any NGO or business looking to empower local leadership. Lastly, the research will help a broad audience better understand the perception held about white, expatriate leadership in NGOs working on children’s issues in Tanzania within the broader context of African leadership theories, NGOs’ roles in perpetuating neocolonialism, and passive forms of white supremacy (e.g., white, expatriate leadership in African NGOs).

 

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