Civil Society Structure

Civil Society in Kosovo is mainly organized in Non-Governmental Organizations. The following are the NGO types: membership associations and foundations. Latest data from the Department for Registration and Liaison with NGOs show that there are over 7,000 NGOs registered in Kosovo, with the majority being membership associations.

Fields that are covered by civil society organizations in Kosovo are numerous. Sectors that at the beginning of 2000 were ‘attractive to donors’ and where a large activation of CSOs could be seen amongst others were related to minority and youth issues – a fall in their numbers can be seen during the last few years. This is a consequence of the shift in donor priorities in general, and in rare cases, due to the shifting of societal priorities. Fields where increase in engagement of CSOs can be noticed – both in number and quality – are: rule of law; human rights; research institutions – that have a goal of contributing in public policy making and influencing the main developments of decision-making; CSOs for the development of civil society are attempting to increase the role of the civil society in democracies both within the general public and public authorities, as well as to facilitate coordination with CSO networks. In addition, they tend to structure the cooperation between the civil society and public authority. Women NGOs remain active in the struggle for a gender balanced society and their network is still one of the most active ones. Other fields in which civil society in Kosovo is active include environment, EU integration, rebuilding, social issues and foreign policies.

Regarding the civil society networks, only a handful of them have survived for a longer period of time and continues to play their initial role. Specifically, Kosovo Women Network, coalition of election monitoring CSOs Democracy in Action and CiviKos – the platform of civil society organizations that aim to structure the cooperation between the civil society sector and public authorities in Kosovo. Also, ad-hoc coalitions and informal CSO groups have successfully undertaken a number of initiatives. The reaction of civil society to the amendment of the Law on NGOs and their active contribution in this process as well as the reaction toward the transformation of micro financial NGOs into joint stock companies – prevention of transformation – are amongst the most important processes in which the civil society has achieved visible success.