Communication Practices in the Context of Social Uprising and Requests for Public Accountability

Although the lack of public accountability and overall dissatisfaction of citizens with the performance of the government(s) have been frequently reported on, citizen participation, as a central concept of good governance, is still highly limited in the Balkan region. In the recent years we have witnessed several protests, initiatives and social uprisings in the region, through which the citizens demanded for government accountability, suggested better policy solutions and promoted better citizen participation.

This project recognises the need to examine the communication practices during these social movements/initiatives in order to understand how the government officials responded to the calls to accountability, what were the practices of citizens/activist in terms of promotion of the movement and its goals, and which role did the mainstream media took when reporting on the protests and social mobilisation.

The project explores the opportunities for activist engagement, especially in the context of increased relevance of ICTs and social networking, but also addresses the structural constraints, such as those that arise from the politics and practices of mainstream media. The research reflects on communication practices during various civic initiatives, including  social uprisings in 2013 and 2014 (in Bosnia and Herzegovina), protests focused on specific issues, such as pollution, reproductive and labour rights (in Macedonia), dismantling of chemical weapons, student protests (in Albania).


  • Foundation Mediacentar Sarajevo (coordinator)
  • School of Journalism and Public Relations, Skopje
  • Albanian Media Institute, Tirana


Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, Regional Research Promotion Programme Western Balkans, in cooperation with the University of Freiburg