Open Society Institute

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Open Society Institute
Image:Osi logo.jpg
Founders George Soros
Founded 1993
Headquarters New York, New York
Staff George Soros, Chairman
Aryeh Neier, President
Stewart J. Paperin, Executive Vice President

The Open Society Institute (OSI)[1], a private operating and grantmaking foundation, aims to shape public policy to promote democratic governance, human rights, and economic, legal, and social reform. On a local level, OSI implements a range of initiatives to support the rule of law, education, public health, and independent media. At the same time, OSI works to build alliances across borders and continents on issues such as combating corruption and rights abuses.

One of the aims of the OSI is the development of civil society organizations (e.g., charities, community groups and trade unions) to encourage participation in democracy and society.


[edit] History

OSI was created in 1993 by investor George Soros to support his foundations in Central and Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union. Those foundations were established, starting in 1984, to help countries make the transition from communism.[citation needed] OSI has expanded the activities of the Soros Foundations network to other areas of the world where the transition to democracy is of particular concern. The Soros Foundations network encompasses more than 60 countries, including the United States. Controversial OSI projects included the Lindesmith Center and others dealing with drug reform.

[edit] Mission

The Open Society Institute works to build vibrant and tolerant democracies whose governments are accountable to their citizens. To achieve its mission, OSI seeks to shape public policies that assure greater fairness in political, legal, and economic systems and safeguard fundamental rights. On a local level, OSI implements a range of initiatives to advance justice, education, public health, and independent media. At the same time, OSI builds alliances across borders and continents on issues such as corruption and freedom of information. OSI places a high priority on protecting and improving the lives of people in marginalized communities.[2]

[edit] Initiatives

Related initiatives include the Open Society Initiative for West Africa (OSIWA) and the Open Society Initiative for Southern Africa (OSISA). Recent efforts have included those that have met with controversy, including an effort in East Africa aimed at spreading human rights awareness among prostitutes in Uganda and other East African nations, which was not received well by the Ugandan authorities, who considered it an effort to legalize and legitimize prostitution.[3] Other initiatives includes: AfriMAP; Arts & Culture Program; Americas Quarterly; Burma Project/Southeast Asia Initiative; Central Eurasia Project; Central Eurasia Project; Closing the Addiction Treatment Gap; Documentary Photography Project; Early Childhood Program; East East Program: Partnership Beyond Borders; Education Support Program; EUMAP; Global Drug Policy Program; International Higher Education Support Program; Latin America Program; Local Government & Public Service Reform Initiative; Media Program; Middle East & North Africa Initiative (MENA)[4]; Open Society Fellowship[5]; OSI-Baltimore; OSI-Brussels; OSI-Washington, D.C.; Public Health Program; Roma Initiatives; Scholarship Programs; Special Initiatives; Think Tank Fund; Turkmenistan Project; U.S. Programs; Women's Program; and the Youth Initiative[6]

[edit] See also

[edit] References

  1. ^
  2. ^
  3. ^ BBC NEWS | Africa | Uganda prostitute workshop banned
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^

[edit] Further reading

  • Thomas Carothers (1999) Aiding Democracy Abroad: The Learning Curve, Washington DC., Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, 1999.
  • Nicolas Guilhot, ‘Reforming the World: George Soros, ‘Global capitalism and the philanthropic management of the social sciences’, Critical Sociology, 2007.
  • Andrea Krizsán and Viola Zentai (eds) Reshaping Globalization: Multilateral Dialogues and New Policy Initiatives, Budapest, Central European University Press, 2003.
  • Thomas Palley, ‘The Open Institute and Global Social Policy’, Global Social Policy, 3(1) 2003: 17-18.
  • Joan Roelofs, Foundations and Public Policy: The Mask of Pluralism, Albany, SUNY, 2003.
  • Diane Stone, “Market Principles, Philanthropic Ideals and Public Service Values: The Public Policy Program at the Central European University”, PS: Political Science and Politics, July 2007: 545—551

[edit] External links

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