Africa, SDG16.7

CIVICUS is a global alliance of civil society organisations and activists dedicated to strengthening citizen action and civil society throughout the world.

Commitment Summary
CIVICUS is working to promote action and accountability on SDG 16 by: 1) ensuring that core elements of this Goal, around fundamental freedoms and citizen participation in particular, are applied across efforts to achieve all SDGs (Goals 1-17), by providing civil society with the knowledge, resources and opportunities to fully engage in Agenda 2030; and 2) supporting civil society generate and use data relating to specific targets and indicators within Goal 16, primarily 16.7 and 16.10, to support a more accurate, inclusive, and accountable approach to follow up and review of Goal 16.

Full Commitment
We support civil society-led monitoring and reporting (separate to government or UN-led follow-up and review processes), via our own initiatives (CIVICUS Monitor, EENAs, and DataShift 3.0), along with getting the data we collect here included in other relevant SDG data platforms/efforts. We also promote and strengthen the role of civil society and non-official data in official (government-led) monitoring processes, to ensure that insights from civil society data are being used to inform policy development and increase accountability.

For Target 16.7, via a Speak!-DataShift collaboration which is surveying a sample of CSOs and citizens in a number of target locations (El Salvador, Chile, Tanzania, Cameroon, and South Africa), to collect both qualitative and quantitative data on indicator 16.7.2, via a survey and corresponding workshop methodology. The methodology is being shared widely, in places like the SDG16+ Hub, and the data produced is set to be featured in multiple places, such as global SDG16+ report, led by UNDP, and the HLPF Voluntary National Review (VNR) reports of the aforementioned countries, and a TAP-Saferworld video campaign. For Target 16.10, our main inputs on tracking progress against this target, via indicator 16.10.1 and other related non-official indicators, come directly from the CIVICUS Monitor. This research platform displays reliable, up-to-date data on the state of civil society freedoms in all countries, including live updates from around the world, to track threats to civil society and learn about the ways in which our right to participate is being realised or challenged.

We will also draw from our Enabling Environment National Assessments (EENAs) and potentially our UNHRC Universal Periodic Review (UPR) submissions too. We are currently in the process of exploring some more specific advocacy targets and opportunities for certain countries/research findings. We also support our members and partners to engage in HLPF processes, to increase civil society engagement in proceedings overall, as well as ensure that the HLPF outcomes include a significantly strengthened commitment to civil society participation (and a corresponding enabling environment) in the SDGs/Agenda 2030. We also engage in other specific UN processes relating to Goal 16 its corresponding issues of inclusive and responsive decision-making, and the upholding of fundamental freedoms, in particular.