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UNODC and civil society: project Looking Beyond

Strenghtening the partnership with civil society in the fight against corruption, human trafficking and in crime prevention and criminal justice reform

Initiated in 2009, the project Looking Beyond is the second phase of project Beyond 2008 which consolidates best practices of engaging with civil society organizations working on drugs to further expand UNODC's outreach to similar organizations working on anti-corruption, anti-human trafficking, crime prevention and criminal justice.

In 2010 and 2011, the project gained a lot of attention through successful activities, especially on the issue of anti-corruption. As an example, UNODC teamed up with Transparency International (TI) in February 2011 to ensure the training of 35 NGO representatives on the United Nations Convention against Corruption (UNCAC) and its Review Mechanism. By doing so, these civil society representatives learned and practiced the application of the Convention in order for them to contribute with their respective countries to the process of the UNCAC Review Mechanism. More information on the training can be found here.

During the Twelfth United Nations Crime Congress on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice which took place in Salvador, Brazil, the UNODC Civil Society Team together with the UNCAC Coalition: A Global Civil Society Network organized an ancillary meeting on "Engagement of Civil Society in the UNCAC Review: Latin American Perspectives" to raise awareness of the UNCAC in Latin America and promote the Convention's review mechanism. Through the Looking Beyond project, many Latin American NGOs  were able to attend the meetings which discussed opportunities for civil society action in the upcoming UNCAC review process, from both inside and outside the anti-corruption movement about monitoring and participation.

As summarized in the Looking Beyond short leaflet (pdf), UNODC's initial project Beyond 2008 ended with an independent external evaluation (pdf) that brought to light the lessons learned and successful practices of engaging with civil society. Looking Beyond thus picks up the best practices on global partnerships and further reaches out to civil society organizations. It aims to increase the participation of such organizations in the international policy debate and tighten their involvement with UNODC's regional and thematic areas of work.

Civil society and the Implementation of the United Nations Convention against Corruption (UNCAC): the ‘Road to Marrakech’ and Beyond

In October 2011, the fourth session of the Conference of the States Parties to the United Nations Convention against Corruption CAC/CoSP 4  will be held in Marrakech, Morocco. This event will present a unique opportunity for civil society to strengthen its voice in the national and international fight against corruption. The project Looking Beyond aims to bolster the capacity and engagement of civil society, including from developing countries by raising awareness about UNCAC, delivering training to Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) on the review mechanism and supporting CSO engagement with governments. This project will increase CSOs' understanding of the Convention and enable them to promote its implementation at local, national, regional and global levels.

Civil Society delegates during the 2009
CAC/CoSP 3 in Doha, Qatar

After a succesful participation of over 110 representatives from 40 worldwide CSOs  participating in the third session of the Conference of the State Parties to the United Nations Convention Against Corruption CAC/CoSP 3, which took place in Doha, Qatar from 9 to 13 November 2009, the UNODC Civil Society Unit is continuing its efforts to bridge the gap between international policy-makers, national authorities and civil society. Building on a strong partnership between UNODC and the UNCAC Coalition and their accomplishments to date, this project aims to expand the capacity of civil society member organizations, especially in developing countries, to work constructively with their governments and with the private sector on UNCAC implementation.

Our partner is the UNCAC Coalition, a global civil society network made up of almost 200 international and national CSOs in over 60 countries, including about 40 Transparency International (TI) National Chapters. It is dedicated to promoting the ratification, implementation and monitoring of UNCAC. The Coalition members represent a broad range of organizations from all regions of the world including pro-democracy organizations, human rights organizations, faith-based organizations, trade unions, development NGOs, as well as anti-corruption NGOs.

Beyond 2008 Project Page