Abstract: This article presents the role of civil society in peacebuilding processes and how the concepts of peacebuilding and civil society development fit into a broader EU foreign policy framework. In its empirical part, this article analyses the role of civil society development as part of the EU’s current enlargement policy. The reason the EU´s enlargement policy was selected for analysis is because it is the only EU policy that comprehensively addresses various causes of instabilities in post-conflict countries, which is crucial for the peacebuilding process. This article demonstrates that through its enlargement policy, the EU addresses various aspects of developing civil society; however, it does not equally emphasise civil society development in individual enlargement countries, while the results of the policy are limited. This article concludes that the EU should address civil society development in a more holistic way, while it should also devote more attention to the inclusion of the local civil society in drafting and the implementation of EU-driven reforms in the region.
Keywords: civil society, enlargement, EU’s foreign policy, peacebuilding