Transnational Civil Society

Project Details


Civil society actors, especially non-governmental organizations (NGOs), increasingly work across borders to influence regional and global politics. We understand civil society actors and the repertoire of actions they mobilise to realise their objectives, in turn, as increasingly affected by (European) regionalisation and globalisation.

This strategic project (SP) is keen to strengthen regional and global perspectives on democracy and citizenship. It seeks to understand: the formation of transnational networks of NGOs and individual policy entrepreneurs; their internal organisation and working practices; their interaction with state actors (governments and international organisations); and their impact on regional and global politics.

Building on the groundwork laid during its successful first phase (2015-19) the SP has been granted faculty funding for two years (2019-21).

Our research, networking, preparation of external funding bids and impact work is organized into three streams, which have been developed to reflect contemporary political challenges and our research interests.
- Stream 1 addresses INGO policies and practices in cross-border and intercultural contexts.
- Stream 2 focuses on transnational civil society networks, and formation, cooperation and promotion of citizenship rights, democracy and regional integration both in Europe and between world regions.
- Stream 3 centres on transnational civil society interaction with political authorities, studying the impact of external shocks (e.g. economic crisis and Brexit) on their work and how they co-shape politics and policy-making, e.g. through activism, interest representation and litigation.

Layperson's description

Effective start/end date1/09/1931/08/21


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