Building National Campaigns: Activists, alliances, and how change happens

Publication date

23 Nov 2007



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Poor-quality employment undermines sustainable development and gender equality throughout the world. Yet, the number of people employed in precarious jobs, with unstable income, little access to benefits, and with fewer opportunities to claim their rights, is increasing, with many workers (especially women) remaining trapped in poverty. High-profile campaigning has become an important strategy for civil-society organizations such as womens' collectives, migrants' groups, student networks, faith-based organisations, trade unions, and others working to make change happen. For many organisations, campaigning is a new type of activity and few have had the opportunity to help each other build capacity to campaign. This book draws on Oxfam International's experience in supporting national labour-rights campaigning initiatives at local and national level. The authors describe and analyse what happened in five campaigns in Colombia, Morocco, Nicaragua, Sri Lanka, and the United States. All faced enormous obstacles, and all were able to overcome them through innovation, new ways of working in alliance, and patient persistence towards their target. This book will be of interest to all campaigning individuals and organisations, not just those working on labour rights. The analysis includes learning points and examples of good practice. The book offers a menu of approaches and activities and readers can choose those which are appropriate and useful to their situation. A practical and up-to-date resources section helps the reader explore the issues further