Istanbul Principles

Sometimes well intentioned but misguided individuals attempting to address issues of poverty reduction and economic development in developing countries blunder their way into cultures and circumstances they truly do not understand. That often results in frustrated donors, offended recipients, and wasted money.

We strongly support the Istanbul Principles as we go about our work. These eight principles, adopted in 2010 by a group of nearly 200 individuals representing 83 countries provide a pragmatic set of guidelines for avoiding, or at least minimizing, such misdirected efforts.

Here are the eight principles:

  1. Respect and promote human rights and social justice.
  2. Embody gender equality and equity while promoting women and girls’ rights
  3. Focus on people’s empowerment, democratic ownership, and participation
  4. Promote environmental sustainability
  5. Practice transparency and accountability
  6. Pursue equitable partnerships and solidarity
  7. Create and share knowledge and commit to mutual learning
  8. Commit to realizing positive sustainable change

If you’d like to read about the background of how these eight principles were developed, along with an in-depth description of what each one implies, you can click click here.