The Heinrich Böll Foundation has been active in Bosnia-Herzegovina since 1999. As a German political foundation close in its orientation to Alliance 90 / The Greens, we advocate for fundamental values such as democracy, peace and non-violence.

Because we understand ethnic and cultural diversity as an integral part of a democratic culture, we attach great importance to the integration of Bosnia and Herzegovina into the European Union, and in this sense we are committed to strengthening the rule of law and citizens' democratic participation the socio-political community.

Strengthening civil society, equal participation of women in social and political life, addressing the recent past and supporting democratic political dialogue are some of our key program objectives.


Western Balkans: Seizing Opportunities, Expanding Influence and Fending Off Dangers


Why EU-integration? Why should the Western Balkans, a region where criminal networks have been gaining ground and corrupt elites have systematically captured state institutions for the benefit of their own criminal business models, enter the EU? Why, when human rights are trampled upon in the region, with manifestations of nationalist radicalization overall?

One can hear these questions repeatedly in the political discourse.


By Marion Kraske

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Anticipating the October 2019 European Council Summit: Make or Break for North Macedonia’s EU Accession?


When the European Council decided to grant the status of a candidate country for EU membership to North Macedonia in 2005, nobody could have expected that almost 15 years later the country would still be in the waiting room for the start of accession negotiations for EU membership. In 2009, the European Commission adopted its first recommendation for the start of accession negotiations between the European Union (EU) and North Macedonia. Eleven consecutive recommendations later, North Macedonia is anxiously waiting for the October 2019 meeting of the European Council as the first plausible opportunity in more than a decade to reach the much-coveted goal.

By Ivan Damjanovski

20 years of hbs in BiH - "A Single Battle of Six" by Nihad Kreševljaković

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„Interference is the only way to stay realistic“ – Heinrich Böll

On September 7th, 2019, the Heinrich Böll Foundation celebrated the 20th anniversary of it´s existence in BiH. For this occasion,  Nihad Kreševljaković created the movie "A Single Battle of Six" which was first shown to the guests of the celebration.

 The following speakers in the movie will be sharing the problems and challenges they encounter on a daily basis: Miroslav Andrić and Muamer Čivić (Srebrenica Wave), Štefica Galić (Journalist and Human-Rights-Activist, Mostar), Maida Bilal (Activist and Member of the Ecology Assocoation BISTRO, Kruščica), Emina Bošnjak (Sarajevo Open Centre) and  Jakob Finci (President of the Jewish Community and President of the Interreligious Council of BiH).

An Appeal for Action – A Way Toward a Functional State?


Objectively speaking, the entire socio-political situation in BiH is much worse today than it had been in the period prior to the previous war which was a project, a domestic and foreign one. Facts show that, before the victory of this “project” with its bloody consequences, fewer citizens used to contest the country they were living in, its Constitution and established institutions, laws and the system. It was more difficult even to imagine the ongoing routine contestation of the state and its institutions, also coming from political leaders, which mostly remain unaddressed and unsanctioned.

By Zlatko Dizdarević


Our publication series:

Perspectives - publication series

People on the Move in Bosnia and Herzegovina in 2018: Stuck in the corridors to the EU

Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) has been part of the “Balkan route” for smuggling people, arms and drugs for decades, but also a migrant route for people who have been trying to reach Western Europe and the countries of the EU in order to save their lives and secure a future for themselves. This report offers insight into the situation on the field: is there a system responsible for protection, security, and upholding fundamental human rights? What has the state response been like? What is the role of the international community?

The EU’s Failing Policy Initiative for Bosnia and Herzegovina


As an epilogue to the failure of the initiative, the EU is now facing a political challenge in the context of constitutional reform, for which it is ill-prepared: amendment of the electoral law of BiH following the ruling of the Constitutional Court in the case of Ljubić. At the same time, the express support of the Croatian Government for the ethno-nationalist agenda of the HDZ BiH poses a serious threat to the EU's unity in its approach to Bosnia and Herzegovina, especially in the context of constitutional reform. The EU, which wants to avoid any discussion about constitutional reform, now stands with its back to the wall.

It looks like, after the parliamentary elections in October 2018, the EU will be forced to face the country's biggest constitutional crisis since the end of the war and the failure of its initiative in BiH.

Media and Shrinking Space in BiH: Silenced Alternative Voices


The Heinrich Böll Foundation presents the study "Media and Shrinking Space in BiH: Silenced Alternative Voices" by the authors Prof. Dr. med. Lejla Turčilo and dr. Belma Buljubašić. The study is a continuation of last year's publication "Shrinking Spaces in the Western Balkans," which deals with the global phenomenon of shrinking space actors in civil society. In this issue, the authors focus on this phenomenon in relation to the media.

Perspectives - Captured states in the Balkans


Diese Ausgabe des Perspectives Magazins beschäftigt sich mit dem Captured-States-Phänomen - Korruption und Nepotismus und die Auswirkungen auf den Rechtsstaat und das leben der Bürger/innen Bosnien-Herzegowinas. AUch die Vergabe von Arbeitsplätzen an taugliche, aber nicht kompetente Personen, der Einfluß von Politik auf Bildung, Pressefreiheit, Nationalismus als politisches Instrument der Machterhaltung und andere Themen werden in dieser Ausgabe genauer beleuchtet.

Das Magazin ist in englischer Sprache verfasst.