It’s that time of year again: CONCORD is busy preparing its annual AidWatch report. It is a key monitoring and accountability tool, looking into how much Official Development Assistance, or ODA, the EU (really) gives to partner countries, how effective it is and whether the EU and its Member States are serious about trying to leave no one behind, the hallowed principle of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
The European Development Days, or EDD, is a development fair that is particularly useful to meet and to network, but also to exchange ideas and – hopefully – to learn. I’ll come back to exchange of ideas, but on the learning front, this year’s EDD was certainly a missed opportunity to demystify the Global Gateway – or rather, to go beyond the slogans.
On the occasion of our 19th General Assembly, our Confederation came together virtually once again. As our 2016-2022 Strategy comes to a close, these two days presented an opportune moment to celebrate everything that CONCORD has achieved over the years as well as our way forward, together.
Another year has come and gone. Our 2021 Annual Report looks back on a year of “Contributing to innovative and meaningful partnerships”. 2021 was the year of planning the future, thinking out of the box and consolidating CONCORD’s role in achieving equal, just and inclusive societies in a sustainable world.
The European Commission’s proposal for a European Declaration on Digital Rights and Principles for the Digital Decade – an important milestone towards a foundation for our shared digital world – reflects a predictable unease.
When the rubber hits the road … who are you going to call? Civil society’s fundamental role in times of crises
I am struck, again and again, by how governments of all colours and persuasions – but clearly some more than others – can question the role of civil society. And not just question our role, but actively undermine it.
In an increasingly unpredictable world that is still countering the shockwaves of the global pandemic and compounding crises, EU ODA donors are still falling short on their collective and decades-old commitments to leave no one behind.
Inequality is growing, democracy is eroding, and acute distress is increasing, but at the same time people’s awareness and inclusion are increasing. What is needed now is dialogue, critical thinking and cooperation.
As International Women’s Day comes around again, and the European Union is facing a historic situation with war at its borders, I’ve been mulling over, and talking with colleagues about, the merits of feminist foreign policy and wondering whether the EU should adopt one.
CONCORD deplores Russia’s recent declaration of war on Ukraine and its unjustified attacks on Ukraine’s territory. CONCORD calls on Russia to withdraw its military forces from Ukraine and resort to peaceful dialogue to resolve any issues it may have.
Joint African-European civil society statement to all Heads of States and government dignitaries attending the 6th EU-AU Summit
200+ CSOs from Africa and Europe, representing citizens and people, have signed a Joint Declaration urging governments and institutions to rectify the lack of inclusivity and transparency of the sixth European Union-African Union Summit.
The EU-AU Summit is a mere three weeks away, but civil society has been shut out from having any real influence over the shape or likely outcomes of the Summit. Our Director reflects on EU institutional behind-the-scenes power play and how it can affect civil society involvement.
We are saddened by the sudden departure of a generous leader who fought hard for the European Union and was a true friend to civil society. May he rest in peace.
Europe’s new Social Economy Action Plan cannot be an ‘add-on’ to the mainstream economy that cleans up the mess that profit-maximising businesses leave behind after they’ve made their money, but become the new mainstream as part of the necessary transition to sustainable production and consumption patterns.
The fifth UN Conference to support Least Developed Countries (LDC5, as it’s known) is around the corner. This is another moment – following hot on the heels of the disappointing COP26 – when the EU must step up. Given the extremely difficult situation that LDCs are facing, the EU must not only meet previous pledges but go further. Unrealistic? Maybe. Necessary? Definitely.
The latest revelations around Facebook have proven the scale of their misdeeds. What does this mean for an already shrinking civil society space? And who should be held responsible? The future is clearly digital. But that future must still respect human rights… and currently that is in the balance. That is why the EU’s efforts to curb the powers of such companies are so important.
The global development landscape is in a state of flux, but the European Union and its Member States’ inaction to achieve its commitments remains constant.
Our Director assesses the latest State of the Union speech and reflects on how Europe is so busy playing catch-up that it fails to have its own gameplan. Which, as ever, results in people losing out.
This guide, addressed to Civil Society Organisations in EU and African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) countries, pinpoints the crucial sections in the negotiated text of the Post-Cotonou Agreement and shows what CSOs themselves can do in terms of advocacy to influence the implementation of the Agreement.
In this month’s blog, our Director assesses the last Council Conclusions welcoming the fact that they address human development but regretting, once again, bland and repetitive commitments, as well as lack of new perspectives on aid.
Our General Assembly 2021, brought our Confederation together, virtually once again, from all corners of Europe. The two days provided a key moment for us to look back at what we have achieved and look forward to our future, together.
In this month’s blog, Andrea Ordoñez, Director of Southern Voice, shares her reflections on a new role for INGOs. What would a new system look like? And, how can INGOs adapt to a more equitable development system? For sure this will require a proactive shift in power relations.
Social sectors are key buffers against slipping further into poverty against exacerbating inequalities in times of crisis. However, blending operations prioritise investable rather than social sectors, posing particular risks to LDCs. This paper examines the modalities that are best suited for LDCs to achieve the crucial SDGs.
Global Europe – the new EU development cooperation instrument – will be implemented in a context of 80 million people globally facing long-term forced displacement. This number is expected to increase due to climate crises, conflicts and food insecurity in the near future. Our recommendations are setting the highest standards for Global Europe implementation.