Civic Space Initiative

The Civic Space Initiative (CSI) supports civil society activists facing restrictions on their freedoms by helping them understand their rights and helping the public recognize the positive contribution civil society organizations (CSO) make in their lives.

CSI Empowers Civil Society Around the World

Governments increasingly deny citizen’s freedom to peacefully assemble and associate with others and to express their beliefs in physical and virtual spaces. This limits their ability to participate in political, social, and economic processes and to improve their communities. It also limits their ability to hold governments accountable and ensure that political leaders serve the people rather than themselves.

To overcome government restrictions, CSI empowers civil society around the world by:

The CSI is a collaborative initiative of ARTICLE 19, CIVICUS: World Alliance for Citizen Participation, International Center for Not-for-Profit Law, and the World Movement for Democracy, and is supported by the Government of Sweden.

 

Ongoing Activities

Civic Space at the United Nations

UN Special Rapporteur (UNSR) on the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association, Clement Voule, joined us at the Ninth Global Assembly to discuss the future of civic space with participants.

Learn More

FOAA Online

Report by former UNSR on the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association, Maina Kiai, demonstrates the positive impact civil society has made in communities around the world.

Learn More

Mapping the Achievements of Civil Society

Former UNSR on the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association, Maina Kiai, published a report that demonstrates the positive impact civil society has made in communities around the world.

Learn More

News & Alerts

March 22, 2019

World Movement Submits General Comment on the Right to Peaceful Assembly and Association

On March 11, 2019, the World Movement for Democracy submitted a general comment on Article 21 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), outlining the rights of peaceful assembly and association established by international law and regional norms. The World Movement’s response focuses on the right of individuals and associations, including civil […]

Take Action
February 19, 2019

UN Special Rapporteur Meets with Digital Technology Community

The emergence and rapid expansion of online spaces has created opportunities for democrats and ordinary citizens in relatively closed societies to enjoy the freedom to assemble and associate in online spaces. Unfortunately, these freedoms have been systematically curtailed as authoritarian governments more aggressively block websites, shut down the internet, surveil users, and prosecute people for […]

Take Action