Promoting Civil Society Space

Across the world, from small, local initiatives to international networks, there are many civil society organisations working for a better world. Because together we are stronger, we seek to strengthen civil society organisations by facilitating cooperation, creating partnerships, thus promoting civil society space.

Civil society can act as a critical voice and therefore hold governments and policymakers accountable. In development policies, civil society serves to democratise the governance of the agenda, sharing the ownership of the policies with the governments and institutions. However, the space for Civil Society to speak up is shrinking around the world and Europe is no exception. Therefore, we aim to enable and enhance political space for a full participation and collaboration of the Civil Society in Europe and around the world. This means that Civil Society has to be consulted as an important actor on policies processes, programmes and funding that impact their work, while considering the diversity of the sector.

The change we want to see:

  • Political Space for Civil Society: We want an enhanced political space for civil society. This can be achieved through ensuring meaningful participation of the Civil Society sector in and through EU bilateral and bi-regional policy processes.
  • Enabling environment for Civil Society: We want to strengthen an enabling environment for Civil Society in EU Member States and globally. CONCORD Members will develop and exchange on response strategies in an effective way.
  • Civil Society Access to EU processes and funding: We want Civil Society Organisations to be meaningfully consulted on programming processes and we want them to have access to EU funding, while respecting the diversity of the sector.
  • Gender Equality: We want the EU and Member States to promote gender equality and women’s & girl’s empowerment in their civil society engagement including through internal capacity development and consistent monitoring.

Multi-annual Financial Framework 2021-2027:

“EU Delegations report 2017” – webpage:

 Cotonou Partnership Agreement – Process and documents:

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What does the future EU budget mean for development cooperation? – Meeting DEVE Committee

CONCORD Europe was invited to speak during the DEVE Committee meeting on 16 May, 2018 under the agenda point “Multi-annual Financial Framework (MFF) for 2021-2027: what does it mean for development cooperation?“. Katerzyna Lemanska (Coordination SUD/GHA) was representing our confederation, in the presence of the DEVE committee and the European Commission. Here are the outcomes of the discussion. 

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EU Country Roadmaps for engagement with Civil Society – Briefing paper 2018

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