State of civil society?
With less than 40 days to go until Commonwealth leaders meet at the
Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM), the Commonwealth
Foundation seeks input from civil society on the
Commonwealth’s intergovernmental processes.
letter-writing marathon 2011
Every year around World Human Rights Day on 10 December, Amnesty
International members and supporters get together in homes, offices,
community centres and other places around the world to write letters
demanding justice for people or communities whose rights have been
violated. Last year people in more than 50 countries sent more than
636,000 appeals. Join the campaign.
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can share your news, publicise your events and articulate the issues
you face. Please send us your contributions by Monday for publication
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Although CIVICUS makes all
reasonable efforts to obtain prima-facie reliable content for
e-CIVICUS, CIVICUS cannot guarantee the accuracy of the reports, views
or opinions of third parties
Africa, 12 October, Johannesburg, South Africa
Now in its third year, University for a Night in Africa brings together
leaders from business, government, philanthropy and civil society to
explore ways of working together to reduce poverty and build more
equitable societies in Africa. The David Rockefeller Bridging
Leadership in Africa Award will be presented to Dr Mamphela Ramphele.
African Dialogue on
Climate Change Finance and Development Effectiveness, Nairobi, Kenya,
The African Climate Change Finance and Development Effectiveness
Dialogue is being facilitated by the African Development Bank and the
OECD DAC in partnership with the United Nations Development Programme,
the UNDP-UNEP Poverty Environment Initiative. This dialogue will bring
together government officials, representatives of civil society, the
private sector and development partners to discuss climate finance and
related lessons from development experience.
Aid Effectiveness (Paris, France 5-6 October)
party on aid effectiveness plenary: to confirm the main themes for the
Fourth High Level Forum on Aid Effectiveness.
So Much Aid, So
Development: Stories from Pakistan
has received more than $20 billion in external development assistance,
but has made little evident improvement in its social indicators. So
Much Aid, So Little Development offers a fresh explanation for this
outcome. The book follows one major initiative, the Social Action
Programme developed by the Pakistani government in 1992 and funded by
the World Bank to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars.
Samia Altaf tells the story of the programme’s shortcomings
through a series of eyewitness vignettes. At every stage, she finds
skewed incentives, misplaced priorities and inappropriate designs
diverting the project from its original intentions and ambitions. In
the process, Altaf introduces into the development conversation the
human dimension that most frameworks have neglected to their detriment.
deadline 16 October 2011)
Rights Watch (HRW) is one of the world’s leading independent
organisations dedicated to defending and protecting human rights. By
focusing international attention where human rights are violated, HRW
gives voice to the oppressed and holds oppressors accountable for their
crimes. HRW seeks to appoint a Director for South Africa, based in
Johannesburg, to coordinate its efforts.
General Development Officer (application deadline 19 October 2011)
is seeking to recruit strong development professionals to serve as
General Development Officers (GDOs) for assignment in Afghanistan.
These assignments will directly support USAID’s mission to
promote the rapid transition of Afghanistan to a more stable,
productive and democratic country with sustainable social
development and economic growth.
Policy and Outreach Director (application deadline 29 September 2011)
ISEAL is an
international non-profit organisation that codifies best practice for
the design and implementation of social and environmental standards
systems. ISEAL shapes the context in which voluntary standards systems
operate, by defining what good practice looks like for the sector, as
well as through influencing how external stakeholders think about and
engage with credible voluntary standards systems.
Defining civil society
is a term whose definition sometimes seems elusive. Its role is almost
always fiercely contested. The phrase is now bandied about by
politicians, pundits and practitioners alike, especially in the context
of the revolutions in the Middle East and North Africa and the popular
uprisings around the world.
While it has often been used as a synonym for NGOs, I was struck that
very few civil society participants at IMF-World
Bank annual meetings in
Washington DC this week described their organisations as NGOs.
The sheer diversity the term encompasses was also much in evidence at
the recently concluded CIVICUS
This message from Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu goes a long way
towards clarifying its meaning, the value of our sector and the need to
protect and nurture its freedom. Watch
comments to this post.
Transparency and Accountability webinar: Do NGO self-regulation
workshop participants from around the world assessed the
success and effectiveness of self-regulation for civil society
organisations. There has been an increasing trend in the last twenty
years to use self-regulation as a way of helping build public trust,
raise standards of practice and protect civil society from burdensome
and inappropriate government regulation. The session asked: Is it
CIVICUS call for
papers: 10th International Society for Third Sector Research
conference, Siena, Italy
The 10th International Society for Third Sector
Research (ISTR) on the
theme “Democratisation, Marketisation and the third
sector’, will take place from 10-13 July 2012 in Siena,
this context, CIVICUS, as an organiser of three panels at the 10th ISTR
conference, is seeking abstract submissions from researchers and
practitioners for the Siena event.
CIVICUS asks: Sign
the petition to free Ales Bialiatski
August 2011, Ales Bialiatski, a prominent human rights defender in
Belarus and vice-president of the International Federation for Human
Rights (FIDH) was detained and his house searched. Later charged with
tax fraud and still languishing in jail, Bialiatski’s arrest
after months of harassment towards civil society in the country. Join
the petition in support of the people of Belarus and in solidarity with
pickets across Eurasia to free Bialiatski.
Society Index (CSI) – New country reports
reports are now available: the Argentina country report and the
Jordan policy action brief. The analytical country reports provide
in-depth coverage of the status of each nation’s civil
Policy Action Brief
MDGs: Time to get it
joined international civil society groups in a call for a new
which is radical, ambitious and universal and which is needed to tackle
issues faced by people and the planet and frame the post-2015 global
Do you have an
iPhone? or A Nokia phone?
If so, download the CIVICUS iPhone app or the Symbian app and keep up
to date with all the latest civil society news and share photos with
us. Visit www.civicus.org/mobile
Transparency International (TI)
up on findings of their research report, TI is currently undertaking
two campaigns in South Africa to strengthen civil society and capacity
in financial management in primary education.
The research, conducted as part of the Transparency and Integrity in
Service Delivery in Africa programme (TISDA) shows that good
governance, and especially accountability and integrity, are critical
in the delivery of basic services and learner performance in general.
on the road
to COP 17
Africa keen to
ensure Kyoto Protocol survives
Durban should not be the burial ground for the Kyoto Protocol, says
Kumi Naidoo, Executive Director of Greenpeace International, about his
expectations from the
17th United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change happening in
home town in South Africa later this year.
UN-Sponsored Climate talks
Earthlife Africa labels the United Nations-sponsored climate talks in
Durban a failure as world leaders struggle to reach consensus on a
binding climate treaty.
When the road to democracy gets hijacked
As the majority of Cambodia’s inhabitants were engrossed in
the tasks of daily life, its government, without fanfare, took another
step forward to install the country’s most
dictatorial and most appalling association law yet seen in the
nation’s post-Pol Pot era.
If you have a long journey back from meetings such as the CIVICUS World
Assembly, there is really no need to play any movie on your small
screen on the plane. Instead, you can enjoy the rewind of the event in
your head. Hundreds of faces. Charming views of Old Montreal. A myriad
of thoughts – yours and of those who inspired you there.
Follow threats and
take action to protect civil society - join Civil Society Watch at www.cswatch.org
Aid transparency campaigners welcome new
Open Government Partnership
The campaign group Publish What You Fund today welcomed the launch of a
new initiative to encourage governments to promote transparency,
empower citizens, fight corruption and strengthen governance.
G20 labour ministers
to push for job creation
International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC)
full-scale jobs emergency confronts the G20 with 110 million jobs
needed by 2015 just to return to the pre-crisis employment rate.
Somalia: Aid before
Twenty aid agencies issued an open letter on 21 September urging the
international community to "put people's lives before politics if [we
are] to stand any chance of aiding people suffering from the famine in
countries’ designs for the green climate fund
With its coffers largely dry and its management being contested, the
Green Climate Fund (GCF) remains a hot topic among African civil
EU steps toward
The European Commission has decided to push for more ambitious reforms
ahead of the aid effectiveness summit to be held in Busan, Korea in
continuing role in Serbia and the Western Balkans: Interview with Sonja
end of Communism, the development of 'civil society' has been deemed to
be of utmost importance for strengthening democratic institutions in
the Western Balkans.
to Russian reality
organisations in Arkhangelsk have found a way to adapt to the
environment that has developed for Russian civil society.
Yemen: After months
unrest, country reaches breaking point
Source: Alert Net
parts of Yemen are in dire need of assistance as crippling food prices
and fuel shortages drive them to breaking point, according to a new
report released today by the international aid agency, Oxfam. Already,
one-third of Yemenis - 7.5m people - are going hungry.
against civil society condemned
Thirty-six civil society groups have released a statement condemning
campaign” being conducted against them by Egypt’s
Anna's right to represent civil society
Who has given Anna Hazare and his team members the right to represent
Pacific Forum chair
leaders interested in increasing role of civil society
Source: Radio New
Islands Forum Chair, New Zealand's Prime Minister John Key, says
leaders are interested in increasing the role of civil society in the
How is civil society doing in Libya? – Analysis
Since the civil uprising erupted in Benghazi in February 2011, a new
Libyan civil society is trying to build from scratch its organisational
structures, human capacities and programmes, after 42 years of one of
the most repressive and brutal regimes of the post-colonial era in
ISO Standard 26000 Guidance for Social Responsibility and the Earth
Earth Charter International Secretariat
The voluntary International Standard ISO 26000:2010 Guidance for social
responsibility aims to be a first step in helping all types of
organizations, in both the public and private sectors, to achieve the
benefits of operating in a socially responsible manner.
The battle for
Killing, disappearances and torture
documents serious and widespread human rights
violations by al-Gaddafi forces and also abuses committed by the
Al Shabaab and the
The Fund for Peace
This report provides an overview of al Shabaab and their role in the
current Somalia food crises.
Youth invited to submit essays on Aid Effectiveness for Aid
Forum in Busan,
November-1 December 2011
Government of the Republic of Korea, hosting the 2011 Fourth High-Level
Forum on Aid Effectiveness (HLF4), has announced an International Essay
Contest as a preparatory event with the purpose of sharing young
people’s inspiration and vision on aid and development. Young
from around the world are invited to submit their innovative ideas for
effective aid and development. Application deadline, 7 October 2011.
Call for expressions
interest to host the 2013 CIVICUS World Assembly
From 2010 to 2012, the CIVICUS World Assembly is being co-hosted by the
Institut du Nouveau Monde (INM) in Montreal, Canada. In 2013 CIVICUS is
organise its 12th World Assembly in a country from the Global South,
with a strong
preference for a Francophone country. CIVICUS is inviting bids from
organisations to partner with CIVICUS in co-hosting the World Assembly
also in partnership with INM. The deadline is 15 October 2011.
IATED seeks papers
sixth Annual International Technology,
Conference, Valencia, Spain
International Association for Technology, Education and Development
is organising the sixth Annual Edition of INTED2012 (6th International
Education and Development Conference) that will be held in Valencia
5-7 March 2012, and invites all those who are interested in education,
innovation to submit their abstracts and to attend in order to share
achievements in the fields of education and collaboration.
PI e-learning course
protection of human rights defenders
International is launching the second series of its e-learning courses
the protection of human rights defenders on 3 October 2011. This course
members of organisations and people whose work involves human rights,
development and humanitarian aid.