2021 State of Civil Society Report – 10 Years

26 of May 2021 | via CIVICUS | Protests prove the power of collective action as states fail pandemic test, says 2021 State of Civil Society report.



As COVID-19 swept the globe, deepening existing fault-lines in societies and generating fear and uncertainty, many governments used the pandemic as a pretext to clamp down on civic freedoms, sparking protests in many countries. The annual State of Civil Society Report 2021, shows that despite the odds, millions of people around the world mobilised to demand more just, equal and sustainable societies during the pandemic.

This year marks the 10th edition of the report, focusing on civil society action and developments affecting civil society in 2020, looking back over 10 years of civil society activity and highlighting key ideas for action in civil society in 2021 and beyond. 

The report is of, from and for civil society, drawing from numerous in-depth interviews and online consultations with civil society activists, leaders and experts, and others close to the major stories of the year. The 2021 report is also informed by CIVICUS’s ongoing programme of research, analysis and advocacy, and the work of their members, networks and partners, particularly the CIVICUS Monitor, their online platform that tracks civic space conditions in 196 countries. Against the backdrop of the pandemic, the report covers five key areas of civil society action during 2020:

  • The global struggle for racial justice
  • Challenging exclusion and claiming rights
  • Demands for economic and environmental justice
  • Democracy under the pandemic
  • Civil society in the international arena



Download Executive Summary
Visit Civicus’ Website to download the full report

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