Since 2005, international civil society support has faced increasing resistance around the world. Ethiopia is widely recognized as a key example of this so-called Closing Space phenomenon. With the Charities and Societies Proclamation (CSP), adopted in 2009, Ethiopia has established strict regulations on civil society organizations that, in particular, restrict the ability of local associations to make use of foreign funding as well as the range of activities allowed for foreign (funded) organizations. In PRIF Working Paper “Negotiating International Civil Society Support: The Case of Ethiopia's 2009 Charities and Societies Proclamation”, Jalale Getachew Birru and Jonas Wolff trace the process of international negotiations that has accompanied the drafting of the Ethiopian NGO law and identify the consequences of these negotiations for international civil society support in the country. Focusing on the interaction between foreign “donors” and the Ethiopian government, the authors analyze (a) what precisely these negotiations have been about, (b) to what extent these negotiations have actually influenced the content of the CSP, and (c) how the CSP as finally adopted has actually affected international civil society support in Ethiopia.
A revised version of this article has been published in the journal Democratization:
Jalale Getachew Birru & Jonas Wolff (2018): Negotiating international civil society support: the case of Ethiopia’s 2009 Charities and Societies Proclamation, Democratization, DOI: 10.1080/13510347.2018.1553957
Birru, Jalale Getachew/Wolff, Jonas (2017): Negotiating International Civil Society Support. The Case of Ethiopia's 2009 Charities and Societies Proclamation, PRIF Working Papers No. 36, Frankfurt/M.