Democracy

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With the publication “For democracy” and this online-dossier, we analyze the state of democracy worldwide as well as the possibilities of democracy assistance. At the same time, we provide insights into the Heinrich Böll Foundation’s political work for democracy.

The global urbanisation presents great challenges for sustainable development. In view of the UN summit Habitat III in Ecuador in this dossier we broach the issue of the cooperation between local governments and the civil society.

Bhanu Ben Jadav mixes cement in an apartment
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Why communities want to co-produce with the state? The experience of communities in the global south is that it is important not to pass over responsibility to the state, because if citizen’s involvement is reduced it is unlikely that the services will be maintained. Diana Mitlin explores a radical concept of participation.

Wohnhaus in Barcelona
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In the city of Barcelona, one can observe the joint power of civil movements and a progressive, accountable government to implement the social right to decent housing.

Movements & Participation

Supporters of the opposition leader Julius Maada Bio protest against vote fraud in Freetown, Sierra Leone in November 2012
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Close on the heels of the UN adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in September 2015 the HABITAT III conference offers the international community a timely opportunity to revisit and revision its commitments to putting human rights at the heart of sustainable urban development. The global context is adverse, marked by growing inequity, rising levels of homelessness and landlessness, forced migration, environmental degradation and climate change.

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The repression of civil societies activites in countries like Egypt and Russia are justified with the "protection of the states sovereignity" and the "principle of non-intervention". When unwelcomed critique is silenced, activists need all our solidarity and support.

Grafik Sprayer
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An analysis carried out by CIVICUS indicates that in far too many countries and in all global regions the conditions for civil society work and activities has worsened. Some of the solutions to this problem could be taken by civil society itself.

Feminism & Gender

Barbara Unmüßig behind the lectern
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Torture and sexualized violence are part of everyday life in Syrian prisons. However, human rights violations committed by the Assad regime play no role at the Geneva peace talks. With this in mind, Barbara Unmüßig, calls for women to be included as peace negotiators.

Rainbow-Falg at the London Pride Parade 2009
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Ten years after the creation of the Yogyakarta Principles, “Principles on the Application of International Human Rights Law in Relation to Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity”, Caroline Ausserer speaks with Professor Stephen Whittle, one of the experts that elaborated them.

The programme "Europe for Citizens" pools activities fostering tolerance promotion, gender equality and the protection of fundamental rights.

Net Politics

Thamyra Thâmara at the Brazilian Conference on Digital Ambivalences, October 2015
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In an interview with Heinrich Böll Foundation Brasil, journalist Thamyra Thâmara, from Complexo do Alemão, speaks about the importance of digital media for popular communicators in the favelas–spaces which are stigmatized by the mainstream media and portrayed as impoverished and violent.

Human Rights

The civil society is globally under pressure. In many countries governments are restricting the activities of civil society organisations with targeted measures. In this dossier we deliver analysis and background knowledge, whilst exploring new scopes for action for civil societies.

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Russian NGOs are under pressure: They are hindered in their work with laws and checks by the authorities, paralyzed and driven to close down. External support is not only helpful, but vital.

Graphic visualizing the threat on freedom of the press (with quote)
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In many regions of the world the freedom of the Internet is just an illusion. Especially in Arab countries, the neighbouring states of Russia and Subsahara-Africa the year 2015 marked the lowest point for democratic participation and civil liberties.

Political Partys

Cartoon by Zapiro about the current situation in Zimbabwe.
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The political situation in Zimbabwe is getting worse, the population is protesting with a Stay-Away against corruption, bond notes and a lack of payment. Paula Assubuji, from our office in South Africa, has spoken with Kudakwashe Chitsike about the current situation in the country.

Greenpeace protesters against nuclear energy
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Around the world, autocratic regimes, and some that consider themselves democratic, are restricting the work of civil society groups that hold them to account.

LGBTI

Two women at the Gay Pride March in Johannesburg 2013
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Civil society organisations can be a vanguard of progress for the LGBTI community. Despite the growing number of laws and policies impeding LGBTI advocacy, activists and organisations successfully challenge these trends.

Cahmber of UN Human Rights Council
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Worldwide people are exposed to serious human rights violations because of their sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI). Therefore the UN Human Rights Council has decided to appoint an independent expert on the protection of LGBTI people.

Migration

Monument mermaid in Warsaw
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With Britain leaving the EU Poland is loosing one of its most important security policy ally. At the same time up to a million polish migrants in Britain are facing an uncertain future as they were already being used as scapegoats in the Brexit campaign.

History

Group foto of the workshop "Experiences in Oral History”
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Life stories conducted by historians and archivists are the nucleus of oral history. The workshop "Experiences in Oral History” dealt with the question, how the handling of these interviews as historical sources could be improved.

Dossiers

Half a million people are expected to visit Rio de Janeiro during the Olympics and Paralympics in August and September. At first glance this will be a huge benefit for the city. But just as for the World Cup in 2014, the city has become a contested space of political and economic interests.

Our dossier on Hungary is as a forum for critical voices since the right-wing government came to power in April 2010. The contributions reflect the socio-political changes as well as long-term developments.

The current ‘refugee crisis’ represents a political crisis for Europe as lack of coordinated action. Our dossier is an attempt to see how national differences present themselves and what common ground might still be achievable for a common European policy.

Publications

Cover Human rights violations in the Olympic city

The Brazilian non-governmental organization Justiça Global, partner organization of the Heinrich-Böll-Foundation, released this publication, that intends to be a tool that allows journalists to know the other side of this mega event, which resulted in the aggravation of processes of segregation, control and privatization of public spaces, and extermination of the black, poor population in the city.

Cover: Private Games?

The Rio Olympics have already cost more public money than official numbers show. An analysis by Julia Bustamante and Caio Lima, Instituto Políticas Alternativas para o Cone Sul (PACS).

All publications on "Democracy"

Democracy

In many countries around the world people are protesting against injustice, abuse of power, dire living conditions, and they are campaigning for higher standards. In the process new forms of citizens’ participation in political and administrative processes are evolving. We support all attempts to achieve greater democratisation and participation.

Events

Sep 26
Javno predstavljanje kandidatkinja za lokalne izbore 2016.
Sarajevo
Sep 27
Santiago de Chile
Sep 28
Democracy Today and Tomorrow
Brussels
Sep 28
This event is fully booked
Brussels
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