Whistleblower Protection in Southeast Europe: Moving to the Next Step

Supported by:National Endowment for Democracy

Project:This report is a follow-up of the regional study, “Protecting Whistleblowers in Southeast Europe: A Review of Policies, Cases and Initiatives” published in 2017

During the last decade whistleblowing has increasingly been mainstreamed in the South-eastern European countries. Presently all South-eastern European countries have adopted whistleblower legislation since 2019 have embarked on the process of revieing their legal frameworks to align them with the EU Directive on whistleblowing.

Civil society organisations, the media, and governments have played active role in the adoption of the legislation, monitoring and review of the implementation, advocacy for improvement and changes, in addition to their active involvement in protecting individual whistleblowers from retaliation and teaming up to uncover and report corruption and wrongdoing.

As a result, whistleblowing is more and more recognised as key additional tool in the toolkit of the anti corruption and integrity building activities, underpinning the overall efforts to consolidate rule of law, human rights and democracy in the region.

One of the main contributions of the civil society organisations since 2015 has been the continual review and evaluation of the whistleblower frameworks in 10 South-eastern European countries. The reports have served as a basis for identifying successes and shortcomings and for guiding stakeholders’ future actions.

As of the contributors and authors of the two previous reports, I’m pleased to introduce this latest update on the Whistleblower Protection in Southeast Europe produced with the contribution of organisations members of the Southeast Europe Coalition on Whistleblower Protection.

This new report is timely as the counties of the region are aiming to stepping up their action to align legislation and practices with the EU Directive on whistleblowing, which constitutes on of the most advanced frameworks in the world.

On the other hand, the report marks a new milestone in the commitment of the civil society organisations to continuing play an active role in the strengthening of whistleblowers protection, freedom of expression and rule of law.