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TRIALOG has been supporting development cooperation and development education in the enlarged EU since 2000.

Many hands together

Historical background

Part of the strategic plan 1997 - 2000 of the Liaison Committee, now CONCORD - the European NGO confederation for relief and development, was to prepare for the European Union's enlargement and to create awareness in the accession countries of the need to participate in the EU's development cooperation policies. Concrete actions proposed in the plan were to identify and contact NGDOs and relevant civil society sectors in accession countries and to promote dialogue between NGOs from EU countries and accession countries. Consequently, a series of activities were undertaken by several National NGDO Platforms.


Preliminary International Conferences and Seminars

The conference "The enlargement of the EU and the role of NGDOs" which took place in November 1998 in Vienna, brought together NGOs from EU countries, accession countries and developing countries. More than 150 participants from 32 countries discussed how development cooperation in the accession countries could be supported by the respective civil societies and how the growth and creation of development NGOs could be enforced.

In June 1999, a conference entitled "From Dialogue to Trialogue" was organized in Berlin. The focus of this conference was to find ways and means of developing genuine cooperation between "East-South-West" civil society actors.


The conclusion of both conferences was:

Although there were some emerging civil society activities for co-operation with the South, the general development of respective structures was still very weak. Old cooperation structures that existed under the communist governments had nearly completely disappeared. A significant potential for solidarity work with the South was seen in the already far more developed human rights, environment and democracy building NGO sectors.

At the NGO-Forum in Tampere, Finland, in December 1999, enlargement and EU-development cooperation were once again specific topics for discussion.

In February 2000, the Portuguese NGDO Platform held an international seminar on enlargement. One focus of the Portuguese NGDO Platform was to deepen exchange and dialogue and to share experiences about transformation processes in a country that, 25 years earlier, had emerged from dictatorship and built a democratic society where development NGOs are part of civil society.


How TRIALOG came about

For the members of the Liaison Committee it was clear that the conferences in Vienna, Berlin and Tampere had been very important opportunities to start information exchange, and dialogue, however it was also obvious that a specific organisational and financial framework was necessary to follow-up the issue of development cooperation in the context of enlargement.


The Austrian NGDO Platform proposed the creation of facilities for setting up a network of civil society actors in "East, West and South". The project proposal found widespread support among the Liaison Committee's members. The Austrian NGDO Platform took over the lead to set up the TRIALOG project. In March 2000, the TRIALOG project became reality, with OED/Austrian Service for Development Cooperation, now HORIZONT3000, as lead agency.


TRIALOG I (2000-2003)

Download the final report here (pdf)


TRIALOG II (2003-2006)

Download the final report here (pdf)


TRIALOG III (2006-2009)

Download the final report here (pdf)


TRIALOG IV (2009-2012)

Download the final report here (pdf)

Vienna Head Office, Wilhelminenstr. 91/IIf,

1160 Vienna, Austria,

Tel: + 43-1-319 79 49, Fax: DD 15,

Skype: trialog.office, office@trialog.or.at