“Springtime” for third-party evaluation of Chinese NGOs

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On May 20th the Ministry of Civil Affairs (MOCA) clarified the general ideas, basic principles and strategic policies of the newly released “Suggestions for the Third-Party Evaluation of Social Organizations (关于探索建立社会组织第三方评估机制的指导意见)”. According to the Philanthropy Times, future evaluations would be improved by the Suggestions in four main areas:

1. Establishing third-party evaluation organizations will help perfect the process of evaluation. With the guidance of the newly released Suggestions, provinces would be able to evaluate social organizations more professionally and collect more accurate results for future reference.

2. The Suggestions confirm the basic principles of third-party evaluation, separating government involvement from social organizations, separating government management and evaluation from social organizations, and conducting fair and transparent evaluations. With these principles, the government will be less controlling in evaluation, enabling evaluations to be done more independently with more public involvement.

3. Organizations with the following qualities have the chance to be selected as third-party evaluating organizations:
– Have the ability to undertake civil responsibility independently
– Have a professional evaluation team
– Possess an effective management structure
– Have a good reputation

4. The Suggestions emphasize transparency and the future usage of evaluation results. They ask third-party evaluating organizations to publicize their methods, standards, procedures, and results to increase the transparency level of the evaluating process. According to the Philanthropy Times, this higher transparency can bring many benefits to Chinese society.