Civil Society, Conflict and Violence (CIVICUS Global Study of Civil Society Series)

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In many local cases, the government is inclined to make concessions or provide compensation.

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Bas and Wright also show that scholars who have studied protests in China over time have noticed that protestors with more money, connections, education, and status have been the most successful and least likely to be subjected to violent treatment. Chinese students return from abroad with new ideas and experiences. There is good potential for strong, ongoing development of social enterprises and service-oriented nonprofit organisations in China. A portion of Chinese civil society will probably ride on the wave of nationalistic narratives, being politically compliant in Western eyes but to some extent an administrative challenge for domestic governance in its excessive nationalism.

Other sections of Chinese civil society, however, could predominantly be inspired by more intrinsic motivations, e. Chinese civil society is also set to engage more in international affairs, especially in relation to sustainable development and environmental protection in the context of the Belt and Road Initiative and international United Nations and G20 conferences. The Chinese government is likely to continue or even expand its support to social enterprises.

The development of nonprofit organisations in China

Advocacy-oriented organisations, however, might face more restrictions. Some will be tolerated or even supported if their priorities match the agenda of the government. Nonprofits that attract foreign support and funding will be very closely monitored. Chinese authorities aim to shape civil society development in accordance with Chinese characteristics and models of consultative authoritarianism. Civil society, in such a model, would be embedded into a political system in which the CPC plays the leading role.

It is unlikely that Chinese authorities will tolerate political activism outside the party-state realm, particularly in years with numerous politically charged events. Below the level of political activism and protest movements, many opportunities remain for Chinese citizens to engage in social activities, voice their opinion, and make proposals on a number of developmental issues, especially at the local level. The lack of freedom for Chinese citizens to engage in political advice or launch campaigns outside the realm or control of one-party rule will continue to invite criticism at the international level, particularly in Europe and America.

Anheier, H. Global Civil Society Yearbook. Bas, Z. Study finds that monitoring of local governments by NGOs improves compliance with environmental regulations. Civil Society. Cunningham, M. Interpreting protest in modern China. Dissent, 58 1 , pp. Hildermeier, M. Begriff, Geschichte, Chancen. Frankfurt, New York: Campus. Kuhn, B. Entwicklungspolitik zwischen Markt und Staat. Sustainable Development Discourses in China.

Journal of Sustainable Development, 9 6 , pp. Open Journal of Political Science , 8. Salomon, L. Steinhardt, H. In the name of the public: environmental protest and the changing landscape of popular contention in China. Truex, R. Wright, T. World Politics Review. Retrieved from www. It provides development aid and support to partner organisations in more than 90 countries.

Civil Society: Bibliography

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  • Works of Elizabeth Robins Pennell.
  • Civil society in China: A snapshot of discourses, legislation, and social realities.
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  • September Credit: Berthold Kuhn. Download expert comment. The views and opinions expressed in this publication are those of the original author s and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views and opinions of the Dialogue of Civilizations Research Institute, its co-founders, or its staff members.

    Macroeconomics in the developing world: Major observations. The European elections: Europe at a crossroads. The debate on American hegemony. Behind the horse-trading for the top positions in Europe Miguel I. Presidential Policy Directive 23 PPD 23 on security cooperation provides the structure to bring institution-building, rule of law, and respect for human rights including the rights to peaceful assembly and association together with training and weapons provision.

    In reality, PPD has not been implemented. Currently, security assistance bifurcation within the U. S government, and the inability to transfer funds readily between departments makes it difficult to couple security assistance with efforts to support good governance and strong civil societies. Congress should support expanded interagency transfer authorities for joint programing in priority countries where closing civic space is intensifying state fragility and exacerbating security concerns.

    The Security and Stabilization program offers lessons in how to do this. Efforts should be encouraged, where appropriate, that enable funding transfers between the Defense Department, State, and USAID for specific challenges. Police and law enforcement agencies should be included in programs like SGI and DIB, given their outsized roles in engaging with civil society actors.


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    • A survey of over activists, human rights defenders, and civil society leaders from 11 different countries conducted in by the non-profit organization, Rhize, and funded by Open Society Foundations and the Atlantic Council highlighted the importance of donor-funded activist exchange programs to improving the knowledge and skills of these actors.

      Funding linked to strong donor agendas and that comes with heavy bureaucratic requirements was generally deemed unhelpful by survey respondents. On the other hand, multi-year core funding for civic groups was assessed favorably, since it allowed these groups to be more focused, strategic, and constituency-driven in their work.

      Flexible funding mechanisms that allowed civic groups and movement to expand their outreach, respond to opportunities, and adjust to fluid environments, were deemed particularly helpful. On the other hand, the State Department and USAID, along with the NED, should be empowered to provide multi-year capacity-building grants to local civic actors, including independent media, investigative journalists, and legal reformers. This funding should support initiatives that build bridges between service providers and human rights groups, and between traditional NGOs and grassroots actors with strong ties to local communities.

      Their grants should encourage. The Lifeline funds helped them access a safe house and keep operating. Ideally the Lifeline Fund is supplemented with a flexible funding mechanism specifically targeting movement actors. In general, U.

      Two new laws affecting civil society organisations in China

      Of course, there are serious risks associated with public donors, like the State Department and USAID, providing direct support to activists, unregistered groups, and movements that challenge power dynamics in a society. How that principle is implemented, practically, should be determined on a country-by-country basis in consultation with local activists and civil society leaders — those in the best position to know when, and which types of support will be helpful or harmful. While private foundations are typically better positioned than public donors to provide aid flexibly, the State Department and USAID can use civil society funding to build bridges between grassroots actors on the frontlines, professional NGOs, and government reformers.

      CSII has the potential to support this approach. Congressional reporting requirements for civil society funding should incentivize flexible programming and monitoring and evaluation approaches that ensure accountability while allowing local partners to lead and assume ownership. Such programs that broker collaboration can help lower the temperature between government and civil society, result in better governance outcomes, and reduce the likelihood of government efforts to close civic space.

      Civil Society Organisations Under Attack by Rightwing Governments & Extremist Groups

      They can, where appropriate, single out the courageous work of human rights defenders, activists, and civic leaders who take great risks to defend civic space in their countries. In meetings with foreign government officials in countries that have enacted or are considering enacting restrictive laws and regulations, Congressional delegations CODELS can emphasize that vibrant civil societies strengthen state sovereignty and promote greater investment and economic prosperity.

      They can make it clear that security assistance programs are contingent upon the protection of human rights and civic space. Reward Effective Diplomats and Development Practitioners: To demonstrate the seriousness of this issue, the State Department and USAID should incentivize efforts by diplomats and development practitioners to protect and expand civic space.

      While context is important in determining the likely impact of public statements by foreign diplomats and Members of Congress focused on human rights, in general activists appreciate acts of diplomatic solidarity on these issues, particularly when such actions involve diplomats from multiple countries. Both the State Department and USAID should align the launch of initiatives that support open civil society to annual performance reviews so that excellent efforts by individual diplomats are reflected and rewarded in career evaluations.

      This could be modeled on the Mark Palmer Prize that the Community of Democracy awards bi-annually to recognize diplomatic efforts on behalf of civil society. FSI should receive adequate funding to ensure that its training addresses the challenge of closing civic space and includes practical ways diplomats should respond. DoD resources for curriculum development and instruction should be dedicated to that end.

      Engage the Business Community: The private sector has a critical role to play in defending civic space around the world.

      Accountability and Transparency - IJNL Vol. 6, Iss. 3

      Businesses have a financial interest in protecting civic space, so that civil societies can hold governments accountable, expose corruption, and defend the rule of law. There are compelling examples from Angola, Pakistan, Cambodia, and Thailand where multinational firms sided with civil society following government attacks on civil rights. Trade treaties and aid agreements should be drafted to include clauses on the imperative of protecting civic space. Congress can furthermore encourage multi-national firms to follow their values, leverage their networks, and mobilize collective action when governments crack down on civic actors and human rights defenders.

      It should continue to assume a leadership role in highlighting this issue in multi-lateral forums and mechanisms like. The New Deal for Engagement in Fragile States is another multi-lateral forum where the issue of closing civic space could receive much greater attention. SDG 16 and 17, in particular, relate to the civil society environment. Finally, the work of the UN Special Rapporteur on the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association has been critical in shining a spotlight on the issue of closed civic space and in proposing solutions.

      Global crackdowns against activists, human rights defenders, and civil society threaten core U. This is a long-term challenge that requires thoughtful, coordinated, and coherent U. Congress has a critical role to play to ensure that tools and programs designed to address attacks on civil society are properly funded, that security assistance funding and programs are properly aligned with this effort, and that the private sector is effectively engaged.

      They can use statements and meetings with foreign leaders and civil society members to elevate the issue of closing civic space and send a clear message that the American people will continue to defend basic rights and fundamental freedoms around the world. Our security, in fact, depends on it. The views expressed in this testimony are those of the author and not the U. Institute of Peace. The weeks of peaceful protests by millions of Hong Kong residents opposed to the erosion of their civil liberties turned violent Monday. From Kenya to Ukraine to Guatemala, citizen-led campaigns are fighting against corruption and demanding government accountability and transparency.

      Government donors and private foundation have increasingly supported such efforts.

      The dire state of civil society in Equatorial Guinea

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