Minds of the Movement

An ICNC blog on the people and power of civil resistance

Hardy Merriman

Hardy Merriman is President of the International Center on Nonviolent Conflict (ICNC). He has worked in the field of civil resistance since 2002, presenting at workshops for activists and organizers around the world; speaking widely about civil resistance movements with academics, journalists, and members of international organizations; and developing educational resources. His writings have been translated into numerous languages. From 2016-2018 he was also an adjunct lecturer at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy (Tufts University).

Mr. Merriman has contributed to the books Is Authoritarianism Staging a Comeback? (2015), Civilian Jihad: Nonviolent Struggle, Democratization, and Governance in the Middle East (2010), and Waging Nonviolent Struggle: 20th Century Practice and 21st Century Potential (2005) and co-authored two literature reviews on civil resistance. He has also written about the role of nonviolent action in countering terrorism and co-authored A Guide to Effective Nonviolent Struggle, a training curriculum for activists.

For a full bio, see here.

Contact: editor [at] nonviolent-conflict.org

Writings from Hardy Merriman

Articles

Ideas & Trends

Small Grants, Big Commitment: Reflections on Support for Grassroots Activists and Organizers

An increasing number of human rights foundations focus on supporting “movements” and the “grassroots.”  Definitions of these terms may vary, as do approaches. Amidst this backdrop, I want to offer some reflections and lessons learned on this topic from ICNC’s work.  Consider this one of many reference points in the growing conversation. […]

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Ideas & Trends

Supporting Civil Resistance Movements: Considerations for Human Rights Funders and Organizations

What makes civil resistance movements effective?  If funders and human rights organizations can identify key factors that answer this question, then their efforts can be oriented towards trying to support the development and growth of those factors. […]

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Ideas & Trends

A Movement-centered Support Model: Considerations for Human Rights Funders and Organizations, Part II

In my previous blog post, I shared a definition of the term “movement” and discussed some distinguishing aspects of movements—such as how they are different from organizations, and the functions that they perform in a society.

This leads to the next question: how do movements make change? […]

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Ideas & Trends

A Movement-centered Support Model: Considerations for Human Rights Funders and Organizations, Part I

There’s a growing effort among human rights funders and organizations to focus on supporting grassroots movements around the world. This trend is rooted in recognition that movements often play an essential role in making social, political, and economic change; that traditional models of funding and support are coming under greater pressure by governments; and that alternative models of change and support are needed.

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Ideas & Trends

Democracy Insurance

Here’s a basic rule of public policy: If a society wants a capability, it has to pay for that capability. If we want a fire department, we have to direct our time, energy, people, and funds to build and support it.  If we want a Center for Disease Control, or a Federal Emergency Management Agency, we likewise have to […]

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Ideas & Trends

A Field Whose Time Has Come

When I got involved in the field of civil resistance in 2002, it was the beginning of an exponential growth curve. This fact was not immediately obvious. I worked as the assistant to Gene Sharp at the Albert Einstein Institution, a very small non-profit organization with an office in the basement of a building in Boston. We didn’t have […]

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