This paper aims to explore various perceptions about capacity development, and its implementation in Pakistani Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs). Owing to the dearth of literature regarding how capacity development and its operationalization is understood by the various stakeholders in the development aid system, this study at hand is an attempt to address these gaps by embracing an inductive and exploratory research method. We chose to employ grounded theory which is an inductive approach to exploring relatively new areas and building theories by obtaining non-quantitative data. This inductive approach was necessary to explore the stakeholders own interpretations of the term capacity development and operationalization of capacity development in Pakistani NGOs. The data has been collected from the various stakeholders working in different nonprofit organizations located across Pakistan. Data was gathered in the form of in-depth interviews and field observations. The data gathered through interviews was analyzed using three stages of coding activities. For obtaining further assistance in qualitative data analysis, we also used NVivo (Version 10). The latter half of the paper examines the implementation techniques that are practiced by Pakistani NGOs for carrying out capacity development. The data revealed five images of stakeholders perception of which training is the most widely used method for implementing capacity development activities at the individual level. Other concepts of capacity development implementation include knowledge exchange; partnership, networking and awareness, these models are mostly practiced at the organizational level.
Keywords: Capacity Development, Operationalization, NGO sector, Grounded Theory