Alys Francis


Alys Francis is a freelance journalist covering development and other news in South Asia for international media outlets. Based in India, she travels widely around the region and has covered major events, including national elections in India and Nepal. She is interested in how technology is aiding development and rapidly altering societies.

Latest Articles

As 'action year' approaches, Indian companies seek compliance with CSR law
5 Oct 2015

Numbers are now rolling in for the first year companies had to spend 2 percent of their average net profit for the past three years on development projects under India's Companies Act 2013.

India further tightens noose on critical NGOs
14 Sep 2015

Nongovernmental organizations in India are bracing for the worst, concerned that proposed regulatory changes could restrict their access to foreign funding further — a move that could force some to close, Devex learns from NGOs in the country.

Implementation, budget changes needed for Swachh Barat to work
17 Aug 2015

India set out an ambitious plan to end open defecation by 2019. But unless major changes are done in the way the budget is allocated and the mission is implemented, NGOs fear the mission will inevitably fail.

In India, ending open defecation requires more than just behavior change
12 Aug 2015

In a country where there are multiple languages, castes and tribes, no single behavior change program will work in all contexts and communities. So how can NGOs working to help end open defecation in the country make such programs work in India?

Will donor conference address customs bottlenecks delaying aid efforts in Nepal?
22 Jun 2015

With the cost of recovery in earthquake-ravaged Nepal estimated at $6.6 billion, preparations are underway for a donor conference this week to coordinate reconstruction and drum up support for the underfunded aid effort.

In Nepal, tapping local labor to fast-track recovery
8 Jun 2015

The April 25 earthquake didn't just render thousands of people inaccessible, it also put at risk an industry that has become a major contributor to Nepal's economy. A partnership between WFP and the country's largest trekking associations aims to address both challenges. Here's how.

Local partners key to building back better in Nepal
2 Jun 2015

While knowledge of local government and languages is important, the key to the success of any rebuilding effort in Nepal is being able to understand and work with local communities, Nepalese NGOs engaged in the U.N. shelter cluster shared to Devex.

Aid agencies 'running against the clock' in Nepal
18 May 2015

Logistical challenges and slow disbursement of aid funds are hampering relief work in Nepal — forcing agencies on the ground to think outside the box and deliver much-needed assistance before the monsoons hit. U.N. officials in Nepal give us the inside track.

In India, NGOs struggle to fight an 'eliminated' disease
11 May 2015

When WHO declared leprosy had been eliminated as a public health problem in India in 2005, it marked the beginning of funding problems for NGOs working to combat the infectious disease in a country registering half of the world's new cases each year.

What future for India's environmental and rights groups?
6 May 2015

If the government doesn't unblock Greenpeace India's frozen accounts soon, the environmental advocacy group would have to shut down at the end of the month. But it is just one of many environmental and rights groups that have come under attack in India — which local NGOs claim is part of a wider crackdown on critics of the Modi administration.