28. November. 2016. | 7:14


Security policy and decision-making processes


Status: Finished

Partners and Supporters:

European Union, represented by the European Union Office in Kosovo, FIQ, SaferWorld

 

Objective:

Build the skills of civil society organisations in research, communication and advocacy so that they can influence security policy and decisions of respective authorities at all levels and contribute to a more secure, democratic and prosperous society through active participation of civil society in policy and decision-making at all levels of governance.

Description:

The project focuses on building the skills of civil society organisations (CSOs) across fifteen municipalities in Kosovo (including in the north, representing a diverse geographic and ethnic composition). The idea is to equip them with the ability to undertake high quality research and effectively advocate for key community safety matters in the communities where they operate. It is believed that influencing security policies is an important way to respond to the concerns of the citizens on peace, security and conflict-related issues, and to contribute to a more secure, democratic and prosperous society overall. Besides capacity-building activities, the purpose of the project is also to provide the space and means for cooperation among participating CSOs, where they could share experiences and best practices, and possibly identify joint advocacy opportunities. The organisations should also engage in contact with local and national authorities on safety-related issues, so that they can fulfill their advocacy role for greater accountability of the responsible institutions, and inclusive security policies and decisions.
The inception phase of the project involved project planning and design, shepherding a capacity needs assessment of local CSOs and selecting those eligible to participate. Aktiv and its partners then conducted tailored training sessions for partaking CSOs, with a focus on advocacy, research and communication skills. The main phase of the project happens over the course of three (3) cycles. Each cycle commences with fieldwork, done by CSOs with the support of Aktiv and its partners, in the form of community dialogue meetings (focus groups). Following the completion of 7 such focus groups (for each phase) in different municipalities, and with the help of external desk research and interviews with responsible authorities, CSOs prepare a policy brief outlining information gathered and enumerating consequential recommendations. This is presented at a central conference drawing stakeholders at all levels of governance and civil society sector, which is followed by a seminar enabling the exchange of best practices among participating CSOs. The cycle is concluded when local CSOs facilitate roundtable discussions in the communities where the dialogue meetings were initially held.
The second cycle is on target to begin in the next calendar year and in different municipalities than in the first round.

Results:

•    Strengthening of the capacity and the interactions of at least 15 CSOs, including at least 3 in the north (formal mechanisms and strategies for coordinated dialogue will be in place)
•    Better equipped CSOs and communities in at least 15 municipalities, including in the north of Kosovo, to influence security policy, decisions of local and national authorities, and EULEX
•    3 policy briefs published: targeted, policy-oriented research with practicable recommendations (specific topics selected based on the outcomes of the community dialogue meetings in consultation with local CSOs; the first is entitled “A Collaborative Approach to Counter Apathy”)
•    Non-published papers generated, including reports and conclusions from community dialogue meetings, workshops, training events, roundtables and conferences. Depending on the security situation at the time, Saferworld, FIQ and Aktiv will decide whether some of the papers will be shared with selected local, national, and international actors.