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The Civic Space Initiative (CSI)

Around the world, efforts by various governments to restrict the space in which civil society operates have grown at an alarming rate. Increasingly, governments are using laws, policies, and practices to limit the ability of people to come together to improve everyday lives.

The Civic Space Initiative (CSI) is a multi-year program that addresses this troubling trend, working to protect and expand civic space. The first phase of the CSI ran from 2012-2016. The current phase of the CSI extends from 2017-2021, and aims to influence policy actors at the global, regional, and national levels to protect civic space; empower civil society actors to advance civic space freedoms; and increase the awareness and engagement of targeted segments of the public in supporting civic space.

The CSI brings together four global partners, the International Center for Not-for-Profit Law (ICNL), ARTICLE 19, CIVICUS: World Alliance for Citizen Participation, and the World Movement for Democracy to achieve this vision.

Support for the CSI is generously provided by the Swedish Government.

Learn about our work and impact.


This webpage is prepared by the International Center for Not-for-Profit Law through the Civic Space Initiative, implemented in partnership with ARTICLE 19, CIVICUS: World Alliance for Citizen Participation, and the World Movement for Democracy.