CIVICUS Monitor: Tracking Civic Space
In October 2016, CIVICUS launched its next generation tool to map, track and analyse civic space trends. The CIVICUS Monitor web platform uses multiple information streams to track developments related to civic space in 195 countries, communicating analysis and updates in as close to real time as possible. The Monitor serves as a source of valuable information and analysis to inform and underpin fact-based advocacy on civic space at national, regional and international levels.
WHAT WE’RE DOING
The CIVICUS Monitor is designed to provide civil society with reliable information on civic space trends on a global scale. As a global alliance, we know that measures of democracy, civil society and human rights are often distrusted, criticised as biased or disregarded because of a lack of connection to the experiences of citizens and CSOs. The CIVICUS Monitor is an opportunity to change this:
Prioritise local voices through multiple sources
The CIVICUS Monitor triangulates multiple sources of information on civic space, while prioritising the voices of local civil society groups and actors. Several information streams – both quantitative and qualitative data – are fed into a central platform at CIVICUS, resulting in more representative and nuanced perspectives on the state of civic space in each country. A collaboration of over 20 research partners – regional and national civil society organisations – provide regular updates on the countries under their purview, striving to include as many local voices and perspectives as possible.
Ratings and country-focused pages
The data inform a country’s civic space rating as CLOSED, REPRESSED, OBSTRUCTED, NARROWED or OPEN. The data streams also feed into individual country pages and updates, which provide verified and up-to-date information on the state of freedom of association, peaceful assembly and expression.
Real-time, nuanced information
Our members often tell us that indexes and measures of civil society should be more nuanced and more closely reflect shifting local dynamics. The CIVICUS Monitor provides continual updates that are as near to real time as possible to convey a more thorough and relevant picture of the changing conditions and developments on the ground. In this regard, the CIVICUS Monitor includes a regularly updated Watch List – these are countries where, based on research and local analysis of the situation, there is a serious, immediate or emerging threat to civic space.
Searchable and growing database of violations
Through the Monitor’s Explore section, users can search a database of civic space incidents. The database is currently at over 1,000 individual reports and growing daily. Users can search by type of violation, such as “excessive force”, “HRD detained” or “legislative restriction”. Users can also filter information by groups targeted, including “LGBTI groups”, “women” or “refugees and migrants”. Users can search for all updates or updates on a specific country. The CIVICUSD Monitor team is constantly working to improve the functionality of the site and keep any eye out for new features and more data coming on line in 2018 and 2019.