March 18, 2011

Comparitive study of Armenian and Turkish civil society

Counterpart International-Armenia partnered with the Third Sector Foundation of Turkey(TUSEV) to develop another comparative study, which compliments the CIVICUS CSI country analytical reports of Armenia and Turkey. The study was conducted in the framework of the Cross Border Cooperation Initiative supported by The Black Sea Trust for Regional Cooperation, a project of the German Marshall Fund of the United States.

The CSI assessment combines multiple indicators to provide a visual display of five following key dimensions:

1. Civic Engagement: 'The extent to which individuals engage in social and political initiatives.'

2. Level or Organisation: 'The degree of institutionalisation that characterises civil society.'

3. Practice of Values: 'The extent to which civil society practices some core values.'

4. Perceived Impact: 'The extent to which civil society is able to impact the social and policy arena, according to internal and external perceptions.'

5. External Environment: 'The above four dimensions are analysed in the context of "external environment", which includes the socioeconomic, political and cultural variables within which civil society operates (CIVICUS Civil Society Index, 'Armenian Civil Society', Analytical Country Report, 2010. pp. 6.).

The five key dimensions are plotted in order to produce the 'Civil Society Diamond diagram'. Armenia's 'Civil Society Diamond diagram' looks like this:

The 'Civil Society Diamond diagram' for Turkey's presented in the above-mentioned report looks like this:

The dimensions of each country measured by the CSI compare:


Both Armenian and Turkish civil society are plagued by low levels of civic engagement and perceived impact. However, both countries have better scores in level of organisation, practice of values and external environment. The countries share common weaknesses and common strengths. The shared weaknesses include, among others, low levels of citizen participation and weak internal governance. Common strengths include the interest of international players in the region and formal internal governance mechanisms in place in each country (Counterpart International and Third Sector Foundation, ‘The Two Diamonds’, 2010. pp. 4-5).

- CIVICUS Civil Society Index, 'Armenian Civil Society', Analytical Country Report, 2010.

- 'The Two Diamonds: Comparative Study of the State of Civil in Armenia and Turkey', Counterpart International/Armenia and Third Sector Foundation/Turkey, 2010.

No comments: