The Group for Conceptual Politics (GCP) from Novi Sad is a non-governmental association founded to achieve the interest in the area of development of self-management, democracy and new politics of citizens' associations in Serbia and beyond. GKP seeks to actualize the self-management politics in terms of encouraging citizens to autonomous political self-organization and to directly participate in governance and decision-making in matters of common and public interest in local communities. These processes include communication with local government institutions, and one of the most important goals of the GCP is the organization of work on the revitalization of local community offices in Novi Sad, as the highest forms of administration in the local communities in Novi Sad, since Novi Sad is a completely centralized town with only two municipalities, and as such is the largest municipality in Europe. In addition to organizing a large number of forums, lectures, discussions and "Public Assembly of Tenants" with citizens in the local community offices in Novi Sad, the GCP with its neighbors has on several occasions organized the citizens' assemblies – institutions of direct participation of citizens in the work of the local community and its offices – by which several problems have been solved that citizens face. Thus, the GCP encourages citizens to initiate by law prescribed instruments of their direct involvement in local self-government bodies, such as peoples' initiatives and citizens' assemblies. At this point, the GCP is struggling with citizens to establish the principle of openess of local community offices in Novi Sad because free participation of citizens and initiatives has been stopped by the party's usurpation of these local self-management institutions. In short, the GCP stands for a politics that is on the side of people.
The GCP was established in 2011 by local activists in Novi Sad, who were then the presidents of the assembly of tenants in the buildings where they live. The problem of housing and survival of the housing stock, i.e. the housing politics, was then formulated with the following statement: in the last twenty years we have been left out of employment and in the next twenty years we will stay without roof over our heads! Since 2013, the work of the GCP on the issue of connecting and organizing tenants and their assemblies takes place through a project called "Local Politics and Urban Self-Management", which is supported by the Foundation for Open Society, Serbia. Within it, the GCP organized over fifty public events and discussions with tenants and citizens, started with the development of the Initiative for the Association of Tenants Assembly in Novi Sad, and published 6 issues of bulletin TENANT in the circulation of 120,000 free copies. The Community Forum is a permanent place for meetings and consultations with citizens in the premises of the GCP in Novi Sad, where on common grounds we articulate the demands and problems faced by citizens and their initiatives, and will now address the problem of local community offices and the right of citizens to participate in their work. Due to closed local community offices, the only place for gathering of citizens and generating local actions at this time is the Community Forum.
In the time that the GCP defines as a permanent electoral campaign and as the reduction of politics of people to electoral politics and politics of associated citizens on representative and parliamentary politics, it is of paramount importance to strive for the space for permanent politics and activism of citizens and their associations, which for the GCP includes realization of the right of citizens to participate directly in the management of public politics of common interest. It consists of the work of the GCP on the new politics of citizens' association, which represents the autonomous political organization of citizens at a distance from the state, which means, above all, that they are associations of citizens not established or controlled by the state, but also a constant struggle for political articulation the authentic needs of people and their associations.
GCP is also a member of the Association of Independent Cultural Scene of Serbia (ANKSS) and is one of the associations that came together in June 2016 at the Initiative of the Independent Cultural Scene of Novi Sad in order to address the problem of marginalization of self-organized citizens and improvement of the conditions of the association citizens in the field of culture.
GCP is also involved in the research of contemporary politics and art, and publishing that is important for the thinking and work of the GCP, which has translated and published several titles from French to Serbo-Croatian language: „Anthropology of the Name“ by French anthropologist Sylvain Lazarus, and "Theory of the Subject" by Alain Badiou. It is currently working on translation of "Cartographies schizoanalytiques" by Félix Guattari, to be published in 2018.
Group for Conceptual Politics
Pariske komune 42
Novi Sad, Serbia
tel. +381 (0)21 6333 013