Civil society is a term that covers a broad spectrum of forms of organisation of citizens into groups that operate outside the government sector, complementing it on the one hand and acting as a counterbalance on the other. The various forms of organisation of civil society include trade unions, humanitarian organisations, chambers of commerce and industry and professional chambers, religious and youth organisations, sports and cultural associations, social movements, and civil society initiatives. The common denominator of all forms of civil association is that they pursue the shared interests of their members. Civil society may be considered as the third sector besides the state and the economy, a sector that, in developed democracies, furthers the interests of citizens and supervises the work of national authorities. We support a free and active civil society and engage in dialogue with it, aware that civil society is one of the main characteristics of a healthy participatory democracy. We are particularly proud that Slovenia is one of the few open societies in which civil society is not limited by the state (source: CIVICUS Monitor).
In Slovenia, the following types of civil society organisations are defined in detail in legislation and regulated in individual acts: societies and associations of societies, private institutes, foundations, cooperatives, and religious communities. In accordance with the definition of civil society provided by the CIVICUS global alliance of civil society organisations, civil society organisations also include chambers, trade unions and political parties, all of which are regulated in Slovenia.