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New Report Examines Civic Space Legal Framework in Select Countries

Yesterday, we published a list with the most viewed legal research reports of fiscal year 2020. Today, I bring you a new report that we recently published on our website: Civic Space Legal Framework in select countries.The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) defines civic space as the “set of legal, policy, institutional, and practical conditions necessary for non-governmental actors to access information, express themselves, associate, organize, and participate in public life.”

The newly published Law Library report examines the legal framework, that is the legally protected rights and freedoms that support civic space freedoms in Brazil, Finland, Morocco, and Tunisia. Specifically, these legally protected rights include constitutional freedoms such as:

  • the right to access government information,
  • freedom of expression,
  • freedom of assembly,
  • freedom of association,
  • the right to privacy and data protection, and
  • freedom of the press

In addition, the report describes internet access laws, and protections and guarantees against discrimination. All four countries surveyed for the report have laws in place that protect access to the internet. For example, Brazilian law recognizes that “internet access is essential to the exercise of citizenship.” Finland, in 2010, adopted a law which provides a legal right to broadband for all citizens, requiring that internet providers make internet available also in geographical areas where it would not be profitable to do so.

It appears that the issue of civic space is as current as ever. The report has already been updated to include reference to a recent Finnish Supreme Court order to dissolve a neo-Nazi organization that violated human rights.

The Law Library regularly publishes new reports online and our most current reports can be accessed here. A comprehensive list of all reports published online by the Law Library can be found here.

Additional Law Library resources can be found on this blog and in the Global Legal Monitor. You can subscribe to receive alerts when new blog posts, Global Legal Monitor articles, and reports are published by clicking the “Subscribe” button on the Law Library’s website.

We hope you find our reports interesting!

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