Giving Compass' Take:

• In an interview with India Development Review, Oxfam India's CEO Amitabh Behar discusses how new technologies are helping nonprofits from a management standpoint, but that the human element of philanthropy, including addressing social inequity, will require a wider lens.

• As organizations change and adapt to modern conditions, the thoughts Behar presents about civil society should be always present: How do we address the issues of justice?

Fixing issues of inequality in Behar's home country will require addressing underlying factors.

This is a moment of dramatic and quick changes. One change that has serious implications on the entire development community is the creation of two parallel sectors: one represented by older nonprofits (including the social movements and mass organizations) and the other, by newer ones, located more in the market (in terms of the principles underlying their world view) and in technology spaces. And the difference between them is one based on principles, in the way in which they approach development — a systemic, integrated social science approach versus a techno-managerial approach.

The older nonprofits look at the society through a lens of the systems at play, the complexity of it, the interdependency of the various factors involved. Whereas with the new age nonprofits, we are seeing an attempt to have technical and management solutions to very complex social questions. This really is the primary and most critical fault line. And it’s this shift that is playing out in multiple ways ...

This approach essentially creates band-aid solutions; resolving at best, the manifestations of poverty, the manifestations of issues of inequality, but not the causes.

At the end of the day, I think what we need to ask ourselves is, "What is the human project?" If the human project is about food and shelter then the techno-managerial approach might reach there. But I believe it is about dignity and justice, and that requires a wider and more integrated world view. History has taught us that food and shelter has never ended misery, slavery, exploitation, un-freedoms and indignity.

Read the full article about the changing nature of civil society by Devanshi Vaid and Smarinita Shetty at India Development Review.