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Concept.png Quango 
(organization typeSourcewatchRdf-entity.pngRdf-icon.png
It describes an ostensibly non-governmental organisation performing governmental functions,

The term quango or QUANGO is a (normally pejorative) description of an organisation to which a government has devolved power, but which is still partly controlled and/or financed by government bodies. The term was originally a shortening of "Quasi-NGO", where NGO is the standard acronym for a non-government organization, and in this sense was used neutrally.

As its name suggests, a quango is a hybrid form of organization, with elements of both non-government organizations (NGOs) and public sector bodies. The term is most often applied in the United Kingdom and, to a lesser degree, Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand and other English-speaking countries.

In the UK, the term quango covers different "arm's-length" government bodies, including "non-departmental public bodies" (NDPBs), non-ministerial government departments, and executive agencies.[1]

Examples include the Bank of England, the BBC World service, and the Arts Council.

United Kingdom

Despite a 'commitment' from the 1979 Conservative party to curb the growth of non-departmental bodies, their numbers grew rapidly through their time in power throughout the 1980s.

The Cabinet Office 2009 report on non-departmental public bodies found that there are 766 NDPBs sponsored by the UK government. The number has been falling: There was 827 in 2007 and 790 in 2008. The number of NDPBs has fallen by over 10% since 1997. Staffing and expenditure of NDPBs have increased. They employed 111,000 people in 2009 and spent £46.5 billion, of which £38.4 billion was directly funded by the Government.[2]


An example

Page nameDescription
Bill Morris