EU democracy promotion in Turkey: funding NGOs, funding conflict?
Funding nongovernmental organisations (NGOs) to encourage democratisation features prominently on the EU's policy agenda for accession countries. The rationale for EU funding to NGOs communicated through policy documents suggests such interests are largely due to the salience of liberal democratic rhetoric, premised on supporting liberal individualism and respect for human rights. By looking at the situation in Turkey, this paper argues that the success of such an approach is contingent on how well it corresponds with the reality of civil society relations in the recipients' context. In cases where such a correlation between policy and context does not exist, donor funding may lead to further divisions between groups in civil society, and even fuel the differences that exist between various groups.