Civil Society and Global Development Agenda







Belda, Sergio; Boni, Alejandra; de Castro, Gonzalo; Martínez, Ignacio

Grupo Sociedad Civil y Desarrollo - REEDES



It is well known that the 2030 Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals have become, since 2015, the main reference in the discussions and in emerging practices in the field of international development. It is also known that this is an agenda that has awakened great debate about whether it can transform the current model of unjust development, or if it will reinforce it and the unequal power relationships in its base.

The new agenda involves great risks but also some opportunities to develop a more transformative discourse and action in the field of development, in the current global context of uncertainty and multidimensional crisis. In any case, it seems that the impact of the 2030 Agenda will have much to do with how it is deployed in the different policies (international development policies but not only), in the different territories and by different actors.

Within the framework of this debate, this special issue of the IberoAmerican Journal of Development Studies will try to explore what role civil society groups can play (from NGOs and social and popular organizations to unions or social economy initiatives), in building a more critical and transformative display of the global development agenda.

It is well known that NGOs and other civil society organizations (CSOs) have played a fundamental role in the construction of this agenda. Moreover, they will continue to play a key role in the process of developing and implementing it, in the different territories, areas and sectors. In this sense, it is worth asking how this role has been and will be exercised, how NGOs and CSOs have participated and are going to participate in these complex political processes were power plays a key role. Also, how these organizations resist or can resist and reconceptualise, or uncritically assume the agenda, and the consequences this may in order to transform or to reinforce the dominant neoliberal model and the current power structures at global, regional or local levels.


The general objective of this special issue is the following:

- To explore the role of civil society in the construction and deployment of a transformative development agenda.

The issue would address three more specific and interconnected objectives.

- To explore the role of NGOs and civil CSOs in the political processes and power dynamics that have shaped the construction in the global development agenda.

- To explore the reception of the agenda by NGOs and CSOs and the role of NGOs in their deployment and location in the territory.

- To explore the role, processes, potentialities and limitations in relation to NGOs and CSOs in the dispute between a more transformative or a more neoliberal deployment of the agenda.



Reception of manuscripts: March 31, 2019.

Papers may be written in English or in Spanish. In the latter case the title, summary and keywords must be translated into English. Manuscripts must follow the standards published in the journal:

Process acceptance, revision and final acceptance: until December 31, 2019

Publication: May 2020


Reception of original articles has to been done through the magazine platform at

ISSN: 2254-2035

ISSN: 2254-2035