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News

In the 25 years since Vietnam introduced the doi moi programme of reforms, citizens have come to participate far more actively in politics at both commune and village levels. But government is still not fully accountable, especially on issues impacting the environment.  more >>
In eight countries of Central Asia and South Caucasus, UNDEF funds a project to increase public participation and make governance more accountable through independent monitoring of public policy-making and implementation. The initiative relies on expertise from independent policy centres with experience of democratic transformation. Through mentoring, training, regional networking and exchange of know-how, civil society organizations are learning to build new channels of dialogue with governments at the national and local levels. more >>
For UNDEF's Fifth Round of Funding, the Secretary-General has approved a short list of 64 project proposals recommended by the UNDEF Advisory Board. The proposals were short-listed out of a record number of more than 3,700 applications - almost double the average number in the past few years. Because of the large number of applicants, UNDEF is able to respond directly only to those on the short list. For more details, please see our next newsletter in July. more >>
UNDEF funded and supported the organization of a conference in Cairo on 26-27 July on "Ways to Strengthen the Democratic Transformation of Egypt". The conference, held by The Cairo Institute for Human Right Studies in partnership with the Madrid-based think-tank FRIDE, drew more than 100 participants from Egyptian civil society, political parties and academic institutions as well as a number of foreign observers. more >>
In Azerbaijan, a transitional society shaped by vast oil and gas resources, UNDEF funds a new project to create the country's first women's parliament. The initiative will serve as tool to give more meaning to women’s rights in Azerbaijan, while strengthening efforts to improve governance in the country as a whole. Two decades after independence, the country faces challenges related to both its post-Soviet legacy and the male-dominated culture of traditional Islam.   more >>
In Ukraine, UNDEF funds a project to build skills among NGOs and citizens to engage in political processes and hold their local government officials accountable. more >>
India has the largest tribal population in the world, with more than 460 tribes comprising some 85 million people. Almost one third are in the Himalayan region. They face a range of challenges, from displacement and exclusion to poverty and illiteracy. An UNDEF-funded project works to strengthen civic participation among high-altitude tribes in Arunachal Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Sikkim, Uttarakhand and West Bengal. more >>
At this crucial time for democratization efforts in several countries, UNDEF hosted a seminar on 9 May to present the findings of a vast study about how well the support family is supporting the many actors in the field. more >>
How can civil society in Russia work more effectively with the authorities to achieve positive change? UNDEF funds an initiative to build skills among Russian NGOs that lack experience in interacting with officialdom and in communicating their message effectively. more >>
'The Doers of Democracy', an exhibition of photographs organized by UNDEF, was displayed in the Visitors' Lobby at UN Headquarters in New York from 9 May to 15 July 2011, and at the Palais des Nations in Geneva in September 2011. The photographs, artifacts and publications in the exhibition all come from UNDEF projects around the world. more >>

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