Civil Society and Governance Programme, IDS | Land Portal | Asegurando los Derechos a la Tierra a través de Datos Abiertos
Focal point: 
Caroline Martin

The Civil Society and Governance Programme was a major research project funded by the Ford Foundation and based at IDS. 

The three-year research programme, established in April 1998, examined the interplay between civil society and governments in 22 different countries, spanning six international regions. 

The idea of 'civil society' has achieved prominence in political and developmental discourse over the past two decades, particularly in connection with successive waves of democratisation, beginning in Latin America and Eastern Europe, and spreading across the developing world. In normative terms, civil society has been widely seen as an increasingly crucial agent for limiting authoritarian government, strengthening popular empowerment, reducing the socially atomising and unsettling effects of market forces, enforcing political accountability, and improving the quality and inclusiveness of governance. Reconsideration of the limits of state action has also led to an increased awareness of the potential role of civic organisations in the provision of public goods and social services, either separately or in some kind of 'synergistic' relationship with state institutions.

Therefore the main aims of this research programme were:

- To gain a clearer analytical and practical understanding of the character and functions of civil society, both in general and in the light of systemic and other variations between and within regions. 
- While recognising that civil organisations can play a number of potentially positive roles, to concentrate on those activities which can enhance (or detract from) the quality of political life and governance in different societies. 
- To develop practical measures which can strengthen civil society and enhance its impact as an agent for improving political life and governance -- with particular emphasis on seeking ways to improve government policies toward poor, excluded and vulnerable groups, and to strengthen their access to and influence on the policy process.

Civil Society and Governance Programme, IDS Resources

Mostrando 1 - 7 de 7
Enero 2000
Tanzania
África subsahariana

The Land Policy in Tanzania is an example of citizens engaging in a protracted struggle for effective participation in the policy process, despite the long exclusion they have experienced in policy making.

Enero 2000
India
Asia meridional

The Kol tribals of Chitrakoot district live a life of abject poverty, exploitation and almost complete subjugation to the feudal landowners, locally known as Dadus. A local civil society organisation, the Akhil Bhartiya Samaj Sewa Sansthan (ABSSS) has adopted a multi-pronged approach to simultaneously address three sets of issues which it felt were crucial for improving the lot of the Kols.

Enero 2000
Uganda
África subsahariana

The 1998 Land Act represents one of the most important pieces of legislation in Uganda, which is predominantly an agricultural country. The role of a consortium of NGOs, The Uganda Land Alliance (ULA), is analysed in this paper, with regard to the enactment of the Act. The issues addressed include:

Enero 2000
Sudáfrica
África subsahariana

This case study deals with the South African government policies for restitution and redistribution of land to people in rural areas who were deprived of it due to racially discriminatory laws and practice. Its main focus is on how the interactions between civil society and the state in the several phases of land reform through the 1990s reflect some key issues of governance, eg.

Enero 2000
India
Asia meridional

Local governance has become increasingly significant as devolution from central and provincial levels is being attempted in India as a result of the enactment of the 73rd and 74th Amendment of the Constitution in 1993.

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