Posted by: r.m. | September 30, 2014

Call for Papers: exploring an agenda for active citizenship

Dear friends,

The Asfari Institute for Civil Society and Citizenship invites academics and civil society activists to offer their insights and viewpoints through research papers and panel presentations around any of the following six areas of intervention. Both regional perspectives and country-specific case studies are welcome. Five hundred word abstracts will be reviewed by a committee, and selected contributions will be published. The conference is particularly interested in geographic and topical diversity, and such diversity will be taken into consideration in choosing abstracts. Contributions and presentations will be accepted in either English or Arabic. Simultaneous translation will be available during the conference.


1. Civil society in the Arab region today
Historical development and current assessments of civil societies in the region; means methods, objectives and salient features; “civil” vs. “communitarian” or Ahli society; charity, community service and advocacy organizations and their varied impacts; effects of the various globalizations on societies in the region (economic, political, global civil society, cyber/digital civil society); assessing achieved and potential impacts on public policy.

2. The morning after revolt: civil society vs. civil society?
The ‘revolutions’ four years later: who is still engaged, and how; counter-revolution by governmental bodies and also by forces within civil societies; organizing associational networks and understanding citizenship in the context of increasing violence, internal armed conflict, and sectarianism.

3. The exercise of citizenship and collective responsibility
The conflation of concepts of nationality, citizenship, identity and loyalty; effects on citizen engagement in the public sphere; perceptions of individual and collective responsibilities; identity and citizenship within – and beyond borders; Arab expatriate engagements, citizenship ‘in exile’ and returnees.

4. The rulers and the ruled: cultural and legal paradigms
Kings, emirs, and presidents vs. subjects and citizens; ownership of the State; securitization of associational life and public spaces; laws of association and freedom of assembly and expression; role and effect of the human rights movement and advocacy organizations.

5. Collaboration and networking
National and regional civil society networking and mutual support; global civil society networking, its effects and implications; Arab participation in international civil society; ‘digital civil society’ and/or ‘cyber civil society’; assessing equal and unequal relationships.

6. A future agenda
Identifying gaps in knowledge and understanding towards a future research and knowledge building agenda; future directions for collaboration and activities; an agenda for empowering civil society actors; existing and potential empowering; models for hope.

Important deadlines:
• 500-word abstracts due: October 24, 2014
Please email abstracts as attachments to
• Accepted abstracts to be notified by November 7, 2014
• Papers due December 29, 2014


Please find attached the Call for Papers PDF in Arabic  ( Call for papers Arabic Version (Agenda for Active Citizenship) 20-22 Feb 2015 Final (24-9-2014) and in English (Call for papers English Version (Agenda for Active Citizenship) 20-22 Feb 2015 Final (24-9-2014) )



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