Digital Postcolonialism and NGO Accountability During COVID-19: Evidence from the Gaza Strip

Mohammed Alshurafa, Mohammed Aboramadan, Roszaini Haniffa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
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Abstract

Drawing from a digital postcolonialism perspective, this paper explores how the leftover technology available in the colonised space shapes the landscape of NGOs’ accountability to beneficiaries and funders during the COVID-19 lockdown. The context of the study is the Gaza Strip, a socially and politically vulnerable geographic location with heavy reliance on support from NGOs. We conducted 20 semi-structured interviews with Palestinian and international NGOs during and after the lockdown to enhance our understanding of the challenges and opportunities they faced in adopting technology to discharge accountability during a major disruptive event. Three main themes emerged from our analysis. First, the biggest challenge is downward accountability to the most deprived and marginalised beneficiaries due to implications of the digital occupation which caused digital unaffordability and illiteracy, voluntary digital resistance to counter suspicion of surveillance, and female digital disempowerment. Second, upward accountability was less problematic as funders accepted ad hoc technology-based accountability practices, but some concerns remained over the efficacy and sustainability of digital adoption in the long run. Finally, the pandemic granted NGOs new opportunities in utilising technology, which successfully changed their process and practice of accountability.
Original languageEnglish
Article number101203
JournalThe British Accounting Review
Volume55
Issue number5
Early online date24 Mar 2023
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2023

Keywords

  • Accountability
  • COVID-19
  • Digital postcolonialism
  • Gaza strip
  • Non-governmental organisations

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Accounting

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