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Engendering civicness in the Syrian peacemaking process

Theros, Marika and Turkmani, Rim (2022) Engendering civicness in the Syrian peacemaking process. Journal of Civil Society, 18 (2). 183 - 200. ISSN 1744-8689

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Identification Number: 10.1080/17448689.2022.2068625


This article explores the evolution, role and impact of the Civil Society Support Room (CSSR), the first formal mechanism to involve civil society in the UN-led political talks for Syria. Through surveys, focus groups and interviews, it examines how and whether the CSSR influenced the peace process. Importantly, it also illustrates how the CSSR transformed the participants and third-party mediators themselves, suggesting that it shapes the conflict and peace-making landscape beyond the high-level political process. It argues that the CSSR had a transformative impact on both the attitudes and behavioural patterns of the participants themselves, while also challenging the dominant representations of the conflict that strengthen the power of conflict actors and shape international action. Even if the UN failed to successfully mediate a political agreement, the paper demonstrates how an inclusive and more independent mechanism can inject the logic of civicness. This can be seen in the design of the Constitutional Committee, in actions taken to broaden inclusivity, and in the changing discourse of political actors.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2022 The Authors
Divisions: Conflict and Civil Society
International Development
Subjects: J Political Science > JZ International relations
H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
J Political Science > JQ Political institutions Asia
Date Deposited: 25 Apr 2022 11:24
Last Modified: 01 Nov 2022 00:14

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