Political parties and civil society in federal countries

Global Dialogue on Federalism: Theme 9 – Political parties and civil society in federal countries

The Forum of Federations is bringing together experts and practitioners in 12 federal countries for them to explore the multi-layered issue of political parties and their relationship to civil society.

A total of about 250 federalism experts and practitioners from the 12 countries will gather in the their respective countries in the next three months, about 20 per country, to discuss the ever topical theme of political parties and how they interface with civil society organizations, elections, government formation, public policy and how these factors shape democratic processes. The roundtables will take place in Australia, Belgium, Canada, Germany, India, Malaysia, Mexico, Nigeria, South Africa, Spain, Switzerland and the United States.

Dr. Wolfgang Renzsch and Dr. Klaus Detterbeck of the University of Magdeburg, Germany will co-edit a book on how the theme on political parties plays out in the 12 countries. The book will be preceded by a booklet containing comparative snapshots of the topic with analyses, a glossary of country-specific terminology and maps.

Confirmed co-ordinators for roundtables in each of the participating countries include Dr Norman Abjorensen, Australian National University (Australia); Prof. Lieven De Winter, Université catholique de Louvain (Belgium), Prof. William Cross, Carleton University (Canada); Dr. Sandeep Shastri, Jain University (India); Prof. Francis Kok Wah Loh, Universiti Sains Malaysia(Malaysia); Prof. Jibrin Ibrahim, Center for Democracy and Development (Nigeria); Christopher Tapscott, University of the Western Cape (South Africa); and Andreas Ladner, University of Lausanne (Switzerland).

Political Parties and Civil Society is the ninth theme in the Forum’s Global Dialogue on Federalism series. The first roundtable on the theme took place on September 4, 2009, with the remaining roundtables slated for October and November 2009.

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