(Balkan Civil Society Development Network) In recent years, governments around the world have responded to increased activism, protests and political engagement of citizens and various civil society actors with cracking down on civic space. Unfortunately, these trends have not bypassed the Western Balkans and Turkey either. Restrictions on foreign funding (in Kosovo, Turkey), barriers to registration (Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Turkey), intervention in CSOs’ internal affairs (Turkey), negative narratives (Serbia and Macedonia), and declining public trust in civil society in almost all of the countries have become the new normal in this region. […]
The objective of the Balkan Civic Practices online edition, published by BCSDN, is to reflect on the challenges in the environment for civil society development in the Western Balkan and Turkey, focusing on local responses in the fight against closing of civic space. It aims to bring together opinions and institutional reflections from professionals, academics and activists from the network and beyond, to debate what can be done to promote civic space in the WBT countries. It also aims to reinforce the trust and the support of others in the efforts to create an enabling environment for civil society development and to inspire joint work for open civic space for citizens’ actions.
The online edition will feature articles developed by selected CSO representatives, activists and supporters through a learning process and mentorship with experts from the network ranging through essays, case studies, and institutional reflections.
All comments, ideas for collaboration and any feedback is welcomed at executiveoffice@balkancsd.