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New e-mail alert from BCSDN Options
#1 Posted : Thursday, November 01, 2012 11:26:40 AM
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Location: Sarajevo
BCSDN Email Alerts Survey - We Need Your Opinion! -- Therefore, in an effort to further adapt them to the needs of the audience, we have created a Survey whose aim is to help us gather your opinions, comments and suggestions regarding the E-mail Alerts so that we can make the content more relevant and useful and the format easier to read. We believe that the changes we are to introduce will enable quicker access to information and a possibility to share the information with your colleagues, partner organisations and stakeholders. We extremely value any suggestion, input and comment that could help us make the E-mail alerts work better for you!

Consultative Meeting with CSOs in Macedonia to Establish Priorities of the IPA 2010 Grant Scheme -- Unit for Cooperation with NGOs in the General Secretariat in Macedonia will hold a consultative meeting with civil society to establish the priorities of the upcoming grant scheme "Supporting the strengthening and sustainability and the development of an active civil society" financed by the EU through the Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance (IPA) 2010, Component (1) Transition Assistance and Institution Building. All interested associations and foundations are invited to participate to the meeting.

Round Tables/Public Debates on Drafts of Procedural Laws in Serbia -- The Ministry of Justice and Public Administration of the Republic of Serbia, in cooperation with GIZ Legal Reform Serbia, is organizing round tables and public debates on the procedural laws. In cooperation with the Government Office for Cooperation with Civil Society, interested CSOs are invited to attend public debates on the Draft version of the Law on Amendments to the Law on Execution and Security and on the draft version of the Law on Mediation, draft version of Law on Amendments to the Law on Civil Procedure, draft version of Law on Amendments to the Law on extra judicial procedure.

Croatian Parliament Adopts the Annual Report of the National Foundation for Civil Society Development
-- On its 5th session held on 26th October, the Croatian Parliament adopted the 2011 Annual Report of the National Foundation for Civil Society Development (NFCSD). The report notes several important milestones and achievements in 2011, such as NFCSD impact on the social change and civil society development, through systematic quality and their various forms of support: short-term financing of civil initiatives through projects that contribute to the democratization and development of civil society, strengthening institutional and organizational capacities of Foundations, promoting volunteering, supporting research projects on the development of civil society, non-profit media, supporting international cooperation and development assistance, contributing to the transfer of knowledge and experience in Croatian international community, encouraging cross-sectoral collaboration and entrepreneurship in the service of the community, aligning regional development of civil society in Croatia and creating opportunities for direct influence of civil society organizations from the Croatian policy makers at the European level through the IMPACT office in Brussels.

Background Analysis: EC Progress Reports 2012 & Civil Society Development -- For the 4th consecutive year, BCSDN prepared background analysis on how civil society development (CSDev) is treated and what progress (or lack thereof) has been noted form the past year in Enlargement countries. The Analysis notes that overall, the Commission has maintained its focus on the issues pertinent to involvement of civil society in policy and decision making, administrative capacity of state institutions to draft and adopt quality legislation through an inclusive process and on the mechanisms that stimulate funding of CSOs. However, the most crucial areas for consolidating the enabling environment for CSDev in the mid-term such as tax regime, state support and human resources issues are insufficiently addressed. The greatest novelty this year is a recognition that “more enabling environment and the conditions for improved policy dialogue [need to be] put in place”, steaming from the Commission Communication “The roots of democracy and sustainable development: Europe's engagement with Civil Society in external relations” published on 12th September, which for the first time since the Enlargement Strategy 2007 recognizes the need to combine both financial (IPA CSF) and political means (monitoring via Progress Reports) to tackle strengthening the democratic institutions and process in Enlargement countries. The previous analysis can be read here.

The Monitoring Matrix for CSDev: Have Your Say -- In March, our network has started development of the 1st monitoring matrix on enabling environment for civil society development (CSDev) with the aim to provide for CSOs with an effective monitoring and advocacy tool for consolidating the legislative and especially the implementation of the enabling environment to be in place for a vibrant, effective and developed civil society sector. The groundbreaking work has been undertaken by 10 CSO practitioners/experts from the Balkans in partnership and support by European Center for Non-profit Law (ECNL) . The development of this monitoring tool has provoked great interest among civil society and stakeholders and before turning into an advocacy tool-kit, we consider it important all interested organizations, institutions and individuals provide us with comments, suggestions etc. to make this tool useful and realistic to the needs esp. of Enlargement countries. Therefore, please send your comments and suggestions to our Executive Office at executiveoffice@balkancsd.net by 15th November.

The European Financial Regulation Brings About Easier Access to EU Funding -- The European Parliament has approved the new European Financial Regulation, which will affect the PRAG as of 1st January 2013, including rules for applying and administering grants. The new Regulation and PRAG will simplify and together with the new approach under IPA CSF for increasing sub-granting schemes, make the EC assistance to civil society much more flexible and easy to manage. Some of the main changes that are introduced are: Recognition of VAT as an eligible cost, Simplification of administrative procedures for low value grants (the threshold has increased from 10000€ to 60000€), Allowing contribution in kind and volunteering as co-financing for low value grants, Allowing surplus as reserves for certain grants, etc. The Civil Society Working Group on EU financial support, worked with more than 70 umbrella groups from across Europe in order to achieve these changes and others. CSOs from the Enlargment countries had their say and contribution with the consultation process organized by Euclid network and supported by TACSO.

CfA: Lifelong Learning and Civil Society Development, Regional Workshop, Podgorica, 11-13.11.2012 -- The Centre for Civic Education from Montenegro and the Institut fur international Zusammenarbeit des Deutschen Volkshochschul-Verbandes (dvv international) are organizing a regional workshop on 11th-13th November in Podgorica. The aim of this event is to enable a multiplying effect, with focus on bringing together CSOs involved in education for democratic citizenship, lifelong learning and civil society development to. The participants are expected to identify common lobbying and advocacy issues for an explicit inclusion of active citizenship as an educational aim of adult education and lifelong learning policies, identify possible joint actions for the European Year of Citizens, exchange information and good practice on concepts of citizenship learning both from the side of the authorities and CSOs approaches in the different countries and identify commonalities in the concepts, with focus on concepts that include all citizens and the competences and skills needed for developing active citizenship and contributing to civil society development.

CfA: Evaluation in Violently Divided Societies for the Journal of Peacebuilding and Development (Deadline 14.11.2012) -- This Call aimes at receiving papers which critically examine the politics, ethics and methods of conducting evaluations and research that poses evaluative questions in violently divided societies. This call is open to papers which criticaly examine any kind of evaluation, any kind of programme, project, or intervention, in any sector, as long as it is set with the context of a violently divided society – be it divided by militarized violence, social violence, structural violence, and so on. Papers should be sensitive to, or focus on the ways in which the violent context affects evaluation, and the ways in which evaluation affects violent conflicts (constructively or destructively). A short list of possible issues can include: methodological limitations or possibilities of evaluation approaches in VDS; ethical challenges and dilemmas; competing ethical systems; Insider-Outsider issues; tensions around questions of integrity; competing interests; antithetical outcomes; security and safety; contested realities; power imbalances; gendered dimensions; parasitic development and evaluation interventions; data manipulation; multiple and competing accountabilities; cash-transaction relationships; epistemic colonialism, and paradigm clashes -- to name but a few. The deadline for receipt of full articles is 14th November. The deadline for receipt of briefings is 14 December. The date of publication is August 2013.

Source: BCSDN e-mail alert nr. 256
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