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Assessing the Impact of International Associations


Assessing the Impact of International Associations
A. Assessment of impact of INGOs on IGOs

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Printed in Transnational Associations, 1978, 10, pp 435-440 [PDF version]. From a paper, originally presented under the title Networks of International Associations, occupational categories and world problems, which was completely re-written in the light of the papers and discussion at the Conference on International Scientific and Professional Associations (ISPAs) and the International System (Philadelphia, November 1976).

A second part of the paper on the impact of associations, together with material from the original version, has been incorporated into:  International organisation networks, a complementary perspective. In: P. Taylor and A.J.R. Groom (Eds.). International Organisation, a conceptual approach (London, Frances Pinter, 1978, pp. 381-413). The quantitative data originally presented has been updated and appears as: International organizations, an overview. In:  Yearbook of International Organizations. (Brussels, Union of International Associations, 1978). 


This paper considers various aspects of the significance and nature of the impact of international associations on their environment, and particularly the impact of international scientific and professional associations on the international system. In approaching this matter, it is first useful to examine why the question of impact is important, what is meant by impact, and the questions raised by the process of proving impact. This establishes an appropriate context within which to comment on the progressive increase in the number of international associations and their interrelationships and the manner in which networks of organizations may diffuse impact and act as vehicles for its transference.