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  • Who are we?

The European Endowment for Democracy (EED) is an independent grant-giving organisation that supports actors of democratic change in the European Neighbourhood and beyond. EED is a joint initiative of EU member states and institutions. EED’s work is overseen by its Board of Governors and Executive Committee.

  • Who do we support?

EED supports civil society organisations, movements and individual activists working towards a pluralistic democratic political system. Official registration is not a requirement. We also support newly created or non-registered organisations, informal platforms, youth groups and individuals.

In particular, EED assists those that cannot be supported by other donors and existing EU instruments. EED is demand-driven and responds to the needs and demands of local democracy actors.

Direct beneficiaries of EED can include pro-democracy movements and actors, civil society organisations, independent media, journalists and bloggers, artists, and non-governmental institutions including foundations and educational institutions.

  •  What initiatives do we support?

EED’s mandate is “to foster and encourage democratisation, and deep and sustainable democracy” in countries facing democratic transitions or democracy deficits in the EU Neighbourhood region and beyond.

Examples of activities supported by EED (please note that the following list is not exhaustive):

  • Promoting political pluralism and diversity
  • Increasing the state’s accountability
  • Enhancing the inclusiveness of societies, including by fighting all forms of discrimination against women and minorities, and by increasing their participation
  • Supporting citizens’ representation and involvement in decision-making processes, both at national and local levels
  • Promoting an increased, more effective and more professional role of pro-democracy actors, such as political parties, Unions and civil society organisations
  • Promoting fundamental freedoms, including freedom of expression, freedom of association, freedom of peaceful assembly and freedom of religion or belief

Supported activities cannot be profit-orientated.

  • Where does EED work?

EED predominantly works in the EU neighbourhood. The countries eligible for EED support in the eastern neighbourhood are Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova, and Ukraine. The countries in the southern neighbourhood are Algeria, Egypt, Jordan, Libya, Lebanon, Morocco, the occupied Palestinian territories, Syria, and Tunisia.

Since 2015, EED’s remit has expanded to accept relevant requests for support from countries in the areas adjacent to the European neighbourhood depending on needs and available funds - Bahrain, Chad, Iran, Iraq, Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Oman, Qatar, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Tajikistan, Turkey, Turkmenistan, the United Arab Emirates and Uzbekistan.

From 2018, EED has further expanded its operations to the Western Balkans and also accepts requests for support from the region - Albania, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Kosovo, former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia.

It is not a requirement to be located in one of these countries, but in general the proposed activities should have a strong involvement of actors from the countries covered by EED and target the populations in those countries.

  • How do we work?

EED primarily seeks to support groups and activists that cannot be supported by existing EU instruments or other programmes. EED is complementary to other donor programmes, acts as a gap-filler and aims to provide fast and flexible support.

The EED Secretariat assesses all requests for support and makes a recommendation to the Executive Committee, which takes funding decisions at its regular meetings.

  • What is EED’s added value?

EED is a “gap filler”. This means that we support those that cannot be supported by other donors and existing EU instruments for a number of different reasons.

  • EED in general seeks to give applicants a final answer within 12 weeks and also provides fast responses to urgent requests for support.
  • EED can support operational costs (salaries, office and other related costs, communications costs).
  • EED accepts requests for support in four languages: Arabic, English, French and Russian.
  • EED can support individuals and non-registered groups.
  • EED accepts requests for support at any time. There is no deadline!
  •   Does EED have country offices or someone in the country I can speak with about my idea or proposal?

EED is based in Brussels and does not have country offices. We do have a network of consultants in a number of the countries we work in. The easiest option to communicate with EED is to email us at

  •  How does EED select its grantees?

Funding decisions are made by Executive Committee. An assessment is made by the EED Secretariat based on the EED mandate.

EED observes, as much as possible, the geographical balance in the allocation of funds between the southern and eastern neighbourhoods.

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