The determination of Kosovo* to improve local self-government and the quality of local democracy in accordance with European standards has been met by the Council of Europe through the implementation of several projects, including on protecting and promoting human rights and dignity, the rule of law and democracy. With recent indicators showing a willingness to enhance local self-government and strengthening the institutional capacities of local authorities, the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe will work with authorities at all levels to foster effective and positive co-operation between the municipal and central level.
In this regard, the Congress pursues co-operation activities by implementing the project “Promoting local democracy in Kosovo*”, which aims to improve local self-government and the quality of local democracy in Kosovo* by fostering multilevel dialogue and strengthening the capacities of local authorities on political integrity, public ethics and open government principles. It is implemented in close co-operation with the Association of Kosovo Municipalities, which enjoys the status of Guest Observer with the Chamber of Local Authorities of the Congress.
The project stems from the discussions on needs and strategic priorities held within the Working Group on Co‑operation between the Council of Europe and Kosovo* and adds to the results of the European Union/Council of Europe Horizontal Facility for the Western Balkans and Turkey. In addition, the project builds upon Congress co‑operation activities carried out since 2012 and is based on the Council of Europe intensified co‑operation with Kosovo* over the years.
*All references to Kosovo, whether the territory, institutions or population, in this text shall be understood in full compliance with United Nations Security Council Resolution 1244 and without prejudice to the status of Kosovo.
The project "Promoting local democracy in Kosovo*" (2020-2021) aims to improve local self-government and the quality of local democracy in Kosovo* by fostering multilevel dialogue and strengthening the capacities of local authorities and elected representatives as drivers of change. It addresses key elements of good governance, including ways to prevent and combat corruption, to advance public ethics and to foster citizen participation as a means of reinforcing the accountability of local public administrations.
The project is implemented by the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities in close co-operation with the Association of Kosovo Municipalities and in line with the principles enshrined in the European Charter of Local Self-Government (ETS No. 122) and its Additional Protocol on the right to participate in the affairs of a local authority (CETS No. 207).
- Central authorities consider the recommendations of the assessment on the state of local self-government – conducted as part of the project – in the development of relevant policies at central and local level
- The institutional position of local authorities and their Association is strengthened, and they are empowered to lead change
The project approach is two-fold: on one hand the Congress will support the implementation of reforms for improving local self-government by fostering dialogue between authorities at the central and municipal level and through expertise. On the other hand, local authorities and the Association of Kosovo Municipalities will be equipped with the knowledge and tools necessary to improve local governance and lead change to meet citizens’ expectations. This will be based on a peer-to-peer exchanges, capacity building and sharing of best practices, involving members of the Congress, and international and local experts.
- Kosovo* central and local authorities take into consideration the recommendations of the Council of Europe Congress on local self-government in the development of policies and identification of reform priorities
- Local elected representatives contribute proactively to the implementation of Council of Europe recommendations on democratic governance through the Association of Kosovo Municipalities
- Local authorities and their elected representatives develop initiatives and policies on open government and public ethics to further enhance local governance
Partners & Beneficiaries
- Association of Kosovo Municipalities
- Local authorities
- Central government and Assembly of Kosovo*
- Local civil society organisations
Study on Local Self-Government in Kosovo*
The Congress conducted a study to evaluate the degree that the local self-government framework conforms to European local democracy standards, including the principles enshrined in the European Charter of Local Self-Government.This is the first study of this type conducted in Kosovo* by the Congress.
Preventing and Combatting Sexism at Local Level
A Guide for Women and Men in Local Politics
This guide presents concrete measures for combatting sexism at local level and ensuring that women play an active and meaningful role in the decision-making process. It is intended for use by local authorities and their national associations as well as possible targets of sexist violence and gender-based discrimination such as female candidates and local office holders.
Handbook on open local government and public ethics
This handbook aims to support local and regional authorities in their efforts to make communities more open, ethical and citizen-oriented. It provides practical guidance on transparency policies and citizen participation mechanisms, includes a concise assessment of the most prevalent corruption risks in the country and incorporates actual examples of best practices.
By having an impact on democratic sustainability and promoting inclusive and participatory societies and institutions at all levels, the project "Promoting local democracy in Kosovo*" contributes to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals 5 (Gender equality), 11 (Sustainable cities and communities), 16 (Peace, justice and strong Institutions) and 17 (Partnership for the goals) of the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.