Towards Sustainable Development In Penang Penang Forum

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About Us

The Penang Forum is a fluid and loose coalition of progressive public-interest civil society groups based in Penang, Malaysia.

We aim to promote participatory local democracy, sustainable planning and development, economic justice, affordable housing, environmental consciousness, sustainable transport, workers’ rights and heritage conservation.


A Steering Committee guides the direction of the Penang Forum coalition and organises events and campaigns. It is run in the spirit of consultation and consensus as a collective without a permanent secretariat. No one group or individual dominates the coalition.


The genesis of the Penang Forum can be traced to the Pesta Rakyat Merdeka event in 2007, organised by Penang-based civil society groups to mark the 50th anniversary of Merdeka.


The cooperation among these NGOs was further strengthened through their involvement in the successful Anti-PGCC campaign in 2007-2008 to oppose the Penang Global City Centre project at the site of the Penang Turf Club. See a campaign leaflet here.


The first Penang Forum was held in 2008, soon after Pakatan Rakyat, an opposition alliance, wrested control of the state from the Barisan Nasional. The forum produced a declaration and working groups came us with a comprehensive report of the issues confronting Penang.


Periodically since then, the coalition organises a major event – Penang Forum – which brings together Penang-based civil society groups and concerned individuals to discuss issues of importance to the state and then highlights these to the Penang state government.


The 40 non-governmental organisations that founded Penang Forum in 2008

  1. ALIRAN
  2. Amnesty International (AI)
  3. Angkatan Belia Islam Malaysia (ABIM)
  4. Academy for Socio‑Economic Research and Analysis (ASERA)
  5. Centre for Malaysia Chinese Study
  6. Citizens for Public Transport Coalition (CEPAT)
  7. Disted College
  8. Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA)
  9. Food Not Bombs (FNB)
  10. Green Crusaders
  11. Jaringan Utara Migrasi dan Pelarian (JUMP)
  12. La Salle Learning Centre
  13. Lions Club of Georgetown Perdana
  14. Little Penang Street Market
  15. Malaysia Information Network for the Disabled (MINDS)
  16. Malaysia Youth and Students Democratic Movement (DEMA)
  17. Malaysian Nature Society (MNS), Penang
  18. National Council of Women’s Organisations (NCWO), Penang Branch
  19. Noise Performance House
  20. Ombak Arts Studio
  21. Pan Pacific South East Asia Women Association, Penang Chapter (PPSEWA)
  22. Penang Environment Working Group (PEWOG)
  23. Penang Heritage Trust (PHT)
  24. Penang Office of Human Development (POHD)
  25. Penang Players
  26. Persatuan Penduduk Taman Pauh Jaya
  27. Pusat Khidmat Pekerja Tanjung (PKPT)
  28. Pusat Komuniti dan Alam Sekitar (CENCED)
  29. Society for the Disabled
  30. Socio Economic and Environmental Research Institute (SERI)
  31. Students Progressive Front (SPF)
  32. Suara Rakyat Malaysia (SUARAM), Penang
  33. Sustainable Independent Living Access (SILA)
  34. Tanjung Bungah Resident’s Association (TBRA)
  35. Temple of Fine Arts (TFA)
  36. Tenaganita
  37. Wanita Jamaah Islah Malaysia (WJIM)
  38. Wawasan Open University (WOU)
  39. Women’s Centre for Change (WCC) Penang
  40. World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action (WABA)