Building civil society in post-1989 Poland by implementing the principle of openness of public life in non-governmental organisations in the Mazowieckie Voivodeship
Oficyna Wydawnicza AFM
Nowadays, civil society is often regarded as tantamount to participatory democracy, which rests on the idea of voluntary participation in public life. The political transformation of the early 1990s was a watershed time that gave Poles the opportunity to participate fully in building a democratic state. The starting point for the thoughts and findings shared in this text are the results of a survey conducted among non-governmental organisations that operate in the Mazowieckie Voivodeship in Poland. The authors have conducted quantitative research on the functioning of the right of access to public information in NGOs. The first part of the study presents the origins of modern civil society, followed by an analysis of the extent to which public participation and openness of social life were an important element of the Round Table Talks held in 1989. The second part of the text is devoted to the description of the research methodology applied. The third part outlines the results of the research carried out so far, pointing to the major areas of NGO activity, as well as to the way in which access to information functions in these organisations. The text highlights the impact of the political changes of 1989 in Poland on the contemporary possibilities of citizens in participation in public life, and the extent to which society is active and willing to exercise its rights. Emphasis has also been placed on the interrelationship between the two core elements of civil society: openness of public life, i.e. access to information, and the activities of NGOs.
civil society, non-governmental organisations, public information, openness of public life, Mazowieckie Voivodeship
Bezpieczeństwo. Teoria i Praktyka 2022, nr 1, s. 191-203.