Decentralisation Workshops in Ukraine

Following the ousting of the previous Ukrainian regime in February 2014, a new government was formed and entrusted with implementing comprehensive reforms. Decentralisation has been considered essential in dismantling the previous system and creating proper conditions for sustainable development in the country.

To support and reinforce the democratic transition in Ukraine, the Community of Democracies conducted a series of decentralization workshops in four Ukrainian cities: Dnipropetrovsk, Odessa, Lviv and Kiev.

The project, funded by Governing Council member Canada, focused on sharing and learning from the experiences of other countries. Former prime ministers of Slovakia and Hungary, both experienced in leading decentralization processes, met in February 2016 with 107 participants; political representatives, locally-elected officials and civil society actors from three regions, to discuss the decentralization process. The practical experiences shared by experienced practitioners, highlighted that the challenges to democracy in Ukraine are not unique and demonstrated that other countries have gone through a similar process.

In a series of workshops, the Community provided a platform to exchange relevant experiences with experts on success and failures of decentralization abroad as well as costs and benefits of the decentralization process. The workshops concluded with a set of recommendation for decision makers, which were presented at the final workshop in Kiev, approved by all participants, and shared with the President, Speaker of the Verkhovna Rada, Minister of Regional Development and Cabinet of Ministers.