On these pages we have gathered written material by some regional activists - discussion papers about trends that may affect civic engagement in the future, critical essays about the state of civil society in the seven countries where the CEE Trust works, as well as some additional reflections who may be valuable for the discussion about CEE societies.
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|What Ails Civil Society?
Author: Agnieszka Graff
Agnieszka Graff claims that through stubbornly labeling themselves as anti-political, neutral and working for the “public good”, civil society organizations have marginalized their own voice and impact in creating real alternatives to the ruling politics
|Being a citizen: not a profession, but a commitment
Author: Anna Krasteva
Launching a campaign to support vulnerable groups is more difficult than conducting a survey on their needs - but the risks of merging civil society too much with social science are poor scientific quality and a society without action, Anna Krasteva claims
|Concern + Trust = Hope
Author: Codru Vrabie
Codru Vrabie reflects on why civil society is being accused of inappropriate ties to politics, the real story of active NGOs in Romania and leadership issues leading to burn out syndromes and one-man shows rather than movements
|Crisis accumulation and signs of revitalization in Hungary
Author: Ferenc Miszlivetz
Ferenc Miszlivetz, points out the current political crises as a chance to reconsider and reformulate the relationships between the Merchant, the Prince and the Citizen - and the “Trickster” the media. As new actors are needed can civil society deliver?
|The Current Quandaries of NGOs in Central and Eastern Europe
Author: Jiří Kopal
International funding and steering has created un-rooted CSOs in CEE and with little contact with grassroots, increasingly dependent on EU funds designed far away from reality, Jiri Kopal is arguing that civil society is incapable of taking a lead in society
|From democracy to kleptocracy and back? The unfinished business of democracy in CEE
Author: Juraj Mesik
What happened with the mobilizing power? Juraj Mesik is disappointed 10 years after the Slovak civil society campaign of 1998 and warns for the serious political problems and concerns that are left unanswered.
Author: Primož Šporar
NGOs risks “losing touch” due to alienation from citizens, problems finding a common language with normal people and tendencies towards self-centered and undemocratic organizations with poor management skills, warns Primoz Sporar