The theme of the conference is civil, non-violent resistance movements. Their numbers have increased greatly in the last thirty years; however, their success rate has been declining for about 10 years (see the new book by Erica Chenoweth, Civil Resistance. What Everyone Needs to Know. Oxford University Press) 2021. It is still true that since 1900, over 50% of non-violent movements that have overthrown a regime or won territorial sovereignty have been successful. But their success rate - like that of violent uprisings - has fallen dramatically from 2010 to 2019. Less than 34% of non-violent revolutions led to success in the last ten years, and less than 9% of violent ones.
At our conference, we would like to look at the new evidence on such resistance movements, taking a four-step approach:
1. prepare an overview of new findings (through a lecture on the first evening).
2. illustrate the situation and challenges of current movements through two examples. At the moment we are thinking of Belarus and Myanmar.
3. take up two challenges/discussion points:
- Shrinked space (restricted space for civil society).
- Accusation of control from outside (CIA & Co)
4. what to do in support? Examples from the work of different organisations
Finally, on Sunday morning, there will be a presentation and discussion on "Protection from afar" - what can be done to protect activists without being present on the ground?