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Promises of Spring: Citizenship and Civic Engagement in Democratic Transitions

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This publication offers a critical analysis of the Arab uprisings, their possible triggers and potential trajectories. It considers citizenship as an essential factor not only in the struggle against inequality and exclusion but also in widening the concept of politics itself.

From this perspective, the publication focuses on three entry points for maintaining social cohesion and supporting political transitions: (a) building consensus around definitions of the “civic” nature of the state in new constitutions; (b) addressing social justice and inequities and promoting transitional justice mechanisms; and (c) shedding light on the dynamic role of civil society in effecting change during transition. The study concludes with an assessment of possible trajectories for uprising countries and offers recommendations to Governments and CSOs.