Engaging Civil Society: Emerging Trends in Democratic Governance

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The rapid pace of globalization has led to the increasing interdependence of member states of the United Nations to achieve sustainable development objectives, including the eradication of extreme poverty, environmental protection, access to basic services and livelihoods, and the promotion of economic growth and opportunities.

Policymakers, scholars, and development practitioners recognize the centrality of effective governance at the local, national, and global levels to promote sustainable development. Along with governments and the private sector, civil society organizations (CSOs) are playing an expanded role in improving transparency, participation, access to services, and the rule of law.

This book looks at the changing roles of civil society in global and national governance. It identifies factors that influence the effectiveness of civil society in promoting democratic governance. It asks: To what extent and how has the global civil society been influencing global governance and democratic change? What have been the patterns of growth of civil society in Asia and Africa, including the legal frameworks under which CSOs are established? How and with what effect has civil society been engaged in promoting democratic change and inclusive governance?

Contributors include William Ascher (Claremont McKenna College and Soka University of America), Robertson Work (Innovative Leadership Services and New York University), Denny Roy (East-West Center), Kadmiel Harrison Wekwete (United Nations Capital Development Fund), Denison Jayasooria (Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia and Human Rights Commission of Malaysia), Jin Sato (University of Tokyo), Ahmed Bilal Mehboob, (Pakistan Institute of Legislative Development and Transparency), John Clark (The Policy Practice), Goran Hyden (University of Florida), Naresh Singh (Canadian International Development Agency), L. David Brown (Harvard University), Rehman Sobhan (Centre for Policy Dialogue, Bangladesh), and Massimo Tommasoli (Permanent Observer for International IDEA to the United Nations).

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9789280811889
  • Publisher: United Nations University Press
  • Publication date: 7/6/2010
  • Pages: 308
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.20 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

G. Shabbir Cheema is director of the Asia-Pacific Governance and Democracy Initiative and senior fellow at the East-West Center, Hawaii.

Vesselin Popovski is senior academic program officer and head of section for peace and security in the Institute for Sustainability and Peace at the United Nations University.

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Table of Contents





1 Civil society engagement and democratic governance: An introduction G. Shabbir Cheema Cheema, G. Shabbir 1

Part I Civil society and global governance 21

2 The role of civil society in global governance Vesselin Popovski Popovski, Vesselin 23

3 The role of transnational civil society in promoting transparency and accountability in global governance John Clark Clark, John 44

4 International advocacy NGOs and network credibility in global governance and problem-solving L. David Brown Brown, L. David 58

Part II Legal empowerment, norms and capacity of civil society 75

5 Civil society and the challenge of changing power relations between the poor and the elite Naresh Singh Singh, Naresh 77

6 International norm-setting by civil society organizations: Lessons for strengthening norms pertaining to legal empowerment of the poor William Ascher Ascher, William 90

7 Civil society innovations in governance leadership: International demonstrations of integral development, the technology of participation and social artistry Robertson Work Work, Robertson 112

8 Civil society, donor assistance and electoral and parliamentary processes Massimo Tommasoli Tommasoli, Massimo 131

Part III Experiences in Asia 147

9 Civil society, policy dialogue and democratic change in Bangladesh Rehman Sobhan Sobhan, Rehman 149

10 China's dilemma over civil society organizations Denny Roy Roy, Denny 174

11 Civil society engagement in democratic transition in Pakistan Ahmed Bilal Mehboob Mehboob, Ahmed Bilal 193

12 Civil society engagement in Malaysia Denison Jayasooria Jayasooria, Denison 214

13 Civil society engagement in Japan Jin Sato Jin, Sato 232

Part IV Experience in Africa 247

14 Civil society in Africa: Constraints and opportunities for democratic change Goran Hyden Hyden, Goran 249

15 The role of civil society in national and local development in Africa Kadmiel Harrison Wekwete Wekwete, Kadmiel Harrison 265

Index 280

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