Global Standard for CSO Accountability

An initiative of nine well-established CSO accountability networks from across the world

It is Accountable Now’s ambition to ensure a truly global approach and practice of CSO accountability. A shared understanding of what accountable CSO behaviour looks like and a global network of like-minded peers will help improve our impact in a globalised world.

The project
The Global Standard for CSO Accountability is an initiative of nine well-established civil society accountability networks from around the world. Accountable Now has been the driving force in developing this project and is one of the nine Project Partners. The overarching aim is to strengthen the effectiveness of CSOs worldwide by devising a collective Global Standard on CSO Accountability. The networks will over three years cooperate to learn from each other, gain a truly global view on CSO accountability, improve their codes and reduce transaction costs. The Global Standard will be built bottom up, carving out the significant existing overlap on core parameters for CSO accountability in all participating codes. It will be used as a key reference standard for the nine networks and serve as a global point of orientation for CSO accountability globally. The Global Standard will be written in a succinct language and serve as a collective base for CSOs from the North and South to engage from. The first draft can be accessed here:

Global Standard DRAFT 1

It is the ambition to mutually recognise the Global Standard reporting requirements between all participating networks. Their constituencies, representing nearly 1500 CSOs across the world, will be actively engaged in developing and testing the Global Standard parameters and sharing it with other CSO networks. We will also work closely together with CIVICUS and other key stakeholders in the sector and will seek to align our work with essential accountability initiatives such as the Istanbul Principles and the Core Humanitarian Standard.

Until December 2016, Accountable Now is consulting with Members on the Standard’s first draft. The input from Accountable Now and other Project Partners’ consultations will serve as basis for the deliberation on guidance documents. The next Project Partner meeting will take place from December 6 to December 8 in Kampala, Uganda.

The project is funded by the Swedish International Development Agency (Sida) and has officially started in spring 2015.

Project Partners:

Implementing Partner:

The International Civil Society Centre is the Implementing Partner and responsible for coordination and facilitation.

Find out more:

Global Standard

International Civil Society Center
First Global Standard meeting in August 2014, Berlin.
Photo by Christian Ihrybauer

“The key problems of our time are global – and so are the values and work approach of civil society. But most people don’t know and our sector doesn’t capitalise on what unites us globally. Currently civil society’s promise to the public is codified in more than 300 accountability frames, most written in very technical language and all covering similar issues in different wording and frameing. At Accountable Now we believe it is time to bring all of these together. Devising a Global Standard with a unified and compelling narrative on civil society organisations' commitments to the public will help improve our work, support public trust and allow people to better hold us to account to our promises. ”

Karenina Schröder, Executive Director, Accountable Now

Lessons from the Global Standard