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Having managed to slip away briefly from her household chores, Joyce Mtenje sits at a wooden desk in a district resource centre in Malawi, flipping through the pages of “The Nation” newspaper. She's taking advantage of an EU-funded centre that's about to transform to a Malawian institution.
With the fall of Ben Ali’s government at the beginning of 2011, space was suddenly created for the emergence of civil society in Tunisia. In the frenetic eleven months that followed, the European Commission (EC) was able to fund 24 new civil society initiatives across the country. Michel Mouchiroud of the EU Delegation in Tunisia shares personal insight and lessons learned from the process.
Over 3,000 development officials have gathered in Busan, South Korea, this week for an important forum on aid effectiveness. According to Vice President of the World Bank Institute Sanjay Pradhan, who is attending the event, capacity development has yet to attain its full potential for changing societies.
The European Commission's support to Transparency International's Advocacy and Legal Advice Centres provides an encouraging example of capacity building of civil society organisations and an imaginative approach to how citizens can play an active role in the fight against corruption.
The European Commission has opened a public consultation addressing civil society organisations to contribute to the future EU policy on "Civil Society Organisations in Development Cooperation".  Kristian Schmidt, Director of Human and Society Development at EuropeAid, comments on the need for improved dialogue at various levels to realise the new role foreseen for civil society organisations.
Capacity4dev Team created a new Article 27 October 2011
More aid contracts being won locally could boost development and job creation in partner countries, according to a new report by the European Network on Debt and Development, Eurodad.
Attendants of a high level conference "Organising Inclusive Ownership" which took place in Brussels in May heard of the success stories of a Dutch financed South-South Cooperation programme between Benin, Bhutan and Costa Rica.
It has been a year since the European Commission adopted ‘The Roots of Democracy and Sustainable Development: Europe’s Engagement with Civil Society in External Relations‘ Communication, which promotes a more strategic engagement of the EU with civil society. EuropeAid’s Virginia Manzitti reviews the progress made in mapping civil society, and provides practical advice going forwards.
When the children of Inyima in southeast Nigeria began to fall sick and die, villagers were horrified to learn that their own poor hygiene practices had contaminated the community’s drinking water, causing a deadly diarrhoea outbreak.
As the European Commission prepares a new Communication on the involvement of civil society organisations in EC development cooperation, delegates at a recent Brussels meeting called on the European Commission to continue the dialogue with such entities and improve their involvement in EU aid delivery mechanisms.