Faith and Development Outcomes: A Comparative Case Study of HIV/AIDS Programmes in Southern Nigeria

  • Diseye Dasimaka

Student thesis: Phd


The inclusion of faith-based organisations in development continues to generate debates regarding the competency of such organisations to deliver social service programs. These debates are further fuelled by the view that faith-based groups provide more effective social services than secular agencies because of their faith character. More and more, government and the development agencies are utilising these arguments to increase their funding to faith-based organisations. The consequent effect of this is the proliferation of faith-based organisations, with the scenario in Nigeria being no different. Most beneficiaries of faith-based programmes consider them an integral part of the development process. However, there is yet another dimension of this anecdote between faith groups and development-; the debates centred on the effects of faith on development outcomes, with faith groups attributing their success to the use of `faith' (the 'faith' hypothesis) and critics stating otherwise. Nevertheless, is there evidence that better development outcomes can be achieved through faith driven development?Utilising data from a combination of qualitative methods-interviews (key informants and others), focus group discussions and archival research and quantitative methods- a survey of selected beneficiaries of programs delivered by both secular and faith-based NGOs, this study test the `faith' hypothesis in development outcomes and compares the organisational characteristics of faith-based and secular organisation that provide services to people living with HIV/AIDS in southern part of Nigeria.I conclude from the findings that ultimately whilst faith did contribute positively within the program and shaped development, it also served as a hindrance, excluding potential beneficiaries from participating in the programs. In addition, because of the focus of the development community on outputs rather than outcomes, these contributions of faith-based organisations were lost.
Date of Award1 Aug 2011
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • The University of Manchester
SupervisorAdmos Chimhowu (Supervisor) & Tanja Müller (Supervisor)


  • faith, development, HIV/AIDS, civil society and Nigeria

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