Role of Civil Society in the European Integration

Amidst preparations for drafting the Framework Strategy on Cooperation between Civil Society and Kosovo Public Authorities, the Working Group on the Role of Civil Society in European Integration held its first meeting on 23 March 2011.

The beginning of the meeting was featured by discussions on the importance of civil society organization’s involvement in the European integration process of Kosovo, the state of play in the field of cooperation with both central and local public authorities, the experience of regional countries towards a more formalized and structured cooperation between civil society organizations and public authorities of the country, etc.

The conclusions of this discussion can be summarized to the following points:

•    To invite in the next Working Group meetings other organizations involved in the European integration domain so that we could have an inclusion on as wider basis as possible;

•    The cooperation of civil society organizations with public authorities in Kosovo is present only in some instances, and there is a lack of structure to this cooperation;

•    The contribution of civil society organizations in the European integration process should be institutionally recognized;

•    The best practices of the region should be used at the larger extend possible with the aim of establishing a genuine cooperation mechanism with public authorities of the country.

At the end of meeting, the following consensual distribution of duties and responsibilities for every organization present was carried out:

•    Kosovo Civil Society Foundation – (KCSF)  shall identify potential fields of cooperation on EU integration of Kosovo with central public authorities;

•    EUIRC and ATTA – shall identify the potential fields of cooperation on EU integration of Kosovo with public authorities at the local level.  

This meeting was attended by four (4) representatives of civil society organizations.

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