Back Zeitgeist for local government reforms: Closing conference of the project in Slovakia

Bratislava, Slovak Republic 28-29 March 2023
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Zeitgeist for local government reforms: Closing conference of the project in Slovakia

After more than 2 years of close and successful cooperation with various Slovak stakeholders, the Council of Europe - European Union Joint Project “Delivering Good Governance in Slovakia – II phase” will end in May 2023. More than 120 activities were organised together with the Slovak Ministry of Interior – main project beneficiary and local partner organisations, to ensure the completion of the project’s objectives under two components:

  • preparation of policy advice to strengthen the Slovak local governance system, including proposals for different reform models, and improving the financial decentralisation policy, and
  • capacity-building of the local authorities and other relevant stakeholders.

Aiming to demonstrate the results achieved both in this and the previous phase of the project, a closing conference has been organised on 28 and 29 March, in Bratislava. Several Council of Europe experts, engaged for the preparation of the policy advice recommendations and for leading the implementation of the different capacity building tools of the Centre of Expertise, presented the work done and participated in panel discussions with the national stakeholders. The presentations included the policy advice prepared in the following areas:

  1. Strategy to Strengthen local governance in Slovakia,
  2. Improvement of the structure and competences of local governments in Slovakia,
  3. Territorial consolidation and Strengthening the status of cities and municipalities in Slovakia, both prepared on the basis of peer reviews with relevant European countries,
  4. Training Needs Analysis of the Local Government,
  5. National Training and Capacity-building Strategy for local self-government,
  6. Competences, powers, mechanisms for redistribution of finances and the coordinating role of the regional level of self-government in Slovakia
  7. Status of the Capital City Bratislava and the City Košice
  8. Strengthening the financial independence of local and regional governments

The capacity-building activities included the implementation of the following tools of the Centre of Expertise:

A capacity-building repository was created, it compiles various tools of the Centre of Expertise, translated and adapted to the Slovak context and piloted among the local authorities. It would serve to ensure the sustainability of the project’s results.

The conference gathered relevant stakeholders from among the local and regional authorities, their associations, the Ministry of Interior, Ministry of Finance, partner organisations, other institutions, Council of Europe, as well as the main project donor – DG REFORM of the European Commission.