Civil Society International CSI

… strengthening democratic ideas and action worldwide

Linked with Holt Ruffin – USA.

Our Mission: Civil Society International (CSI) assists independent organizations working for democracy and civil society in countries closed, or inhospitable, to these principles. We bring together in one place information about projects worldwide committed to the keystones of civil society: limited government, popular elections, and the rule of law; free association and expression; regulated, but open and market-oriented economies; aid to the poor, orphaned, elderly, sick, or disabled; and finally, civic cultures that value pluralism and individual liberty but also respect human needs for community and shared visions of the common good… (full text about 1/2).

To find yourself through the whole, huge amount of pages {some under construction}, best you go first to the sitemap;

Here some excerpts:
CSI Brochure;
Add an organization;
Central Asian countries and Russia;
International Orgs: Religion;
International Orgs: NGO Development;
Civic Action in Eurasia;
Address: Civil Society International CSI, 2929 NE Blakeley Street, Seattle, WA 98105;
Contact: e-mail one, e-mail two, Tel: 206-523-4755, Fax: 206-523-1974

About CSI 2/2: We assist projects overseas by

  • publicizing their work;
  • helping them recruit staff, interns, or overseas partners;
  • and helping them identify opportunities for funding or leadership development.

Within the U.S., we support in similar ways the work of American civic organizations that are active on an international front, as well as those working to defend and deepen civil society within our own democratic culture.

Funding Support for the work of CSI comes from fees for services and sales of literature, as well as from donations by individuals and foundations. To learn more about how we have been funded, see Who Supports CSI.


CSI provides assistance mainly in the form of publicity, networking, and production of educational resources.

Through our listserv CivilSoc, for example, we inform subscribing organizations about potential sources of funding; we assist them in the recruitment of staff or interns; and we put them in touch with potential partners abroad.  By publishing on this website and in our books the work of organizations that meet one or more of the criteria above, we help these organizations become recognized internationally. By encouraging philanthropic entities to view their special concerns in a global context, we have contributed to a more international perspective on charitable activity.  CSI is not a foundation, however, and we do not make grants on our own behalf to organizations or individuals.

Regardless of where one’s interests or concerns lie – whether with human rights in China, environmental education in Ukraine, juvenile justice in Brazil, or public health in Zimbabwe – CSI can furnish examples of sound organizations addressing such issues responsibly and deserving more support, whether from domestic sources or from abroad. In special cases, we can help transfer financial assistance to projects overseas.


Elena Bonner, Andrei Sakharov Foundation, Moscow;
Gulnara Dzhamanova, Central Asia Development Information Network (CASDIN), Almaty, Kazakhstan;
Herbert Ellison, Jackson School of International Studies, University of Washington, Seattle, WA;
Catherine Fitzpatrick, UN Representative of the International League for Human Rights;
Francis Fukuyama, School of Advanced International Studies, Johns Hopkins University, Washington, DC;
Dennis McConnell, Maine Business School, Orono, ME;
Michael McFaul, Associate Professor of Political Science, Stanford University, Peter and Helen Bing Research Fellow at the Hoover Institution, and Senior Associate, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace;
S. Frederick Starr, Central Asia-Caucasus Institute, School of Advanced International Studies, Johns Hopkins University, Washington, DC;
Sharon Tennison, Center for Citizen Initiatives, San Francisco, CA;
Andrei and Elena Topoleva, Agentsvo Sotsialnoi Informatsii, Moscow Board of Directors;
Ronald S. Bemis, Seattle, WA;
Richard Greene, Seattle, WA;
Bob and Maryann Ness, Seattle, WA;
Vladimir Raskin, Seattle, WA;
Daniel Waugh, Seattle, WA.

Executive Director:

Executive Director Holt Ruffin founded Civil Society International in 1992. He is a graduate of Stanford University (BA, 1966) and the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University (MPA, 1975). Mr. Ruffin’s work experience includes six years in the Economics/Policy Research Department of Bank of America and in the International Division of Wells Fargo Bank in San Francisco. Articles by Mr. Ruffin have appeared in the Seattle Times, the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, Freedom Review, Money Manager, Crisis, and other publications. Most recently, he was lead editor or author of The Post-Soviet Handbook: A Guide to Grassroots Organizations (revised edition, 1999), Civil Society in Central Asia (1999, co-edited with Daniel Waugh), and Internet Resources for Eurasia (2001). The Post-Soviet Handbook and Civil Society in Central Asia were each co-published with the University of Washington Press.

Mr. Ruffin was a short-term research fellow at the Kennan Institute for Advanced Russian Studies at the Woodrow Wilson Center in Washington, DC, in 2000; he also participated in a six-week seminar on the theme of civil society, held at Boston University under the leadership of Dr. Peter Berger in 1994. (About CSI 2/2).

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