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Global 21 fourth quarter 2015

network Colloquia commonwealth CHOGM: putting reform on the agenda Civil society needs more opportunities to engage with foreign ministers during CHOGM if the Commonwealth is serious about reaping the benefits of the work done by these organisations Every two years, the Commonwealth gathers civic voice to several Commonwealth for reasons of politics and fellowship ministerial meetings over the past 20 under the banner of a Heads of Government years, most notably Education, Finance, Meeting – known to all as CHOGM. Health and Women’s Affairs. But there is concern that this once highly The principal engagement, however, has valued event has lost ground in an increasingly been with CHOGM. This started after civil crowded and competitive multilateral society organisations took themselves calendar. CHOGM reform is on the agenda. to Harare prior to the CHOGM in 1991. The Commonwealth Foundation’s This prompted the Foundation to support interest in CHOGM reform stems from its an NGO forum in Auckland in 1995 and it role as a facilitator of civil society inputs has been present in the wings of CHOGM to Commonwealth political processes. In ever since. CHOGM has attracted interest this capacity, the Foundation has brought from civil society organisations and the 78 l www.global -br ief ing.org four th quar ter 2015 global Commonwealth has responded, deploying the Foundation to manage the process. A discussion on reform of the CHOGM process comes at a time when there is considerable interest in the ways in which institutions engage with citizens. In response to demands for citizen dialogue, global institutions have responded incrementally, but these initiatives have generally been seen as unsatisfactory by civil society and its advocates. The Commonwealth is part of that global system, but aspires to a set of Vijay Krishnarayan


Global 21 fourth quarter 2015
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