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In December 2010, Expeditio held meetings with representatives of the Boka Municipalities in order to present a possible plan of work on cultural strategies of Kotor, Tivat and Herceg Novi. During the meetings, the three Municipalities expressed their political will to enter the strategy development process.

The meeting was attended by:

1.    Bosiljka Radonjić, Municipality of Tivat, Department for Administration and Social Affairs,  head of the Department

2.    Boris Pean, Municipality of Tivat, Department for Administrative and Social Affairs, associate for social affairs issues

3.    Dragan Laković, Cultural Centre Tivat, cultural events organizer

4.    Radovan Božović, Municipality of Herceg Novi, Department for Social Affairs and General Administration, head of the Department

5.    Predrag Cvetičanin, an expert with experience in developing cultural policies

6.    Tatjana Rajić, Sostenuto project coordinator, EXPEDITIO

7.    Aleksandra Kapetanović, EXPEDITIO

Since Mrs. Ljiljana Jovović, a head of the Department for Culture and Social Affairs in the Municipality of Kotor was unable to attend the meeting in Tivat due to health reasons, a separate meeting was held with her in her office in Kotor on December 8, 2010.

At the beginning of the meeting, Tatjana Rajić presented the goals and activities of the Sostenuto project because of the possibility to create Local Cultural Strategies of Kotor, Tivat and Herceg Novi through this project. That possibility was discussion during the meeting.

Then she went on to list the activities EXPEDITIO is ready to conduct (and financially cover) within the Sostenuto project, in relation to the development of Local Cultural Strategies:

§  coordinating the process, collecting the necessary input data for the strategies, organizing meetings and accompanying events

§  engaging an expert, Mr. Cvetičanin, whose role will be to guide a working team through the entire process and to compile the information collected during the focus groups and interviews

§  organizing a study trip for the working team members to Italy and Slovenia (by 3 representatives from each Municipality)

§  organizing a visit of Mr. Davor Mišković, a representative of the NGO “Drugo More“ from Rijeka, in order to present the Cultural Strategy of Istria

§  translating and printing the publication “Guide to Citizen Participation in Local Cultural Policy Development for European Cities”, by Sanjin Dragojević and Jordi Pascal i Ruiz

§  printing a certain number of copies of the Local Cultural Strategies of Kotor, Tivat and Herceg Novi

After that, Mr. Predrag Cvetičanin introduced the process of local cultural strategies development and proposed a plan of activities. According to his proposal, the working team responsible for the strategies development should consist of three members from each municipality, which means nine members totally. He recommended that the working team members from each Municipality should include by one representative of the local self-government, cultural institutions and NGO sector.

The time scheduled for the strategies development is four months, during the period March-June 2011. A draft plan of activities was distributed to all meeting participants.

Compared to the first concept submitted to the Municipalities on September 7, 2010 (anticipating nine months for the strategies development, with a greater scope of activity for the working group members), the consultant, Mr. Cvetičanin, proposed that the whole process be simplified so that the working team members engagement be as simple and efficient as possible. The working team members will be responsible for collecting relevant data, contacting other stakeholders and organizing focus group discussions and individual interviews. The consultant will be responsible for the process coordination, as well as for the document drafting.

The most important for this process is that the persons appointed to the working team are motivated, professional, ready to take an active part in the process and contribute to it, as well as to be competent. The working team should not be just a formal group of people, but a team genuinely dedicated to the document creation and to creatively contributing to the whole process. It is also necessary to take into account the equal gender representation within the working team. The assumption is that the engagement of the working team members will not be longer than 10 full working days.

Expeditio has already done a great deal of work - organized a workshop on "Strategic Planning of Culture at the Local Level” which gathered some useful information; conducted an analysis of the capacity of cultural institutions in Boka Kotorska, as well as an analysis of the state of non- institutional cultural scene, whose results should be ready soon. Furthermore, a research of the cultural needs of youth in Boka Kotorska was conducted and a database of all cultural stakeholders in Boka Kotorska collected. In addition, Expeditio has a large collection of information gathered through various projects and activities that we implemented over the past 13 years in the area of Boka Kotorska (Boka Kotorska landscape mapping, Database of cultural monuments…).

Expeditio can finance the above stated activities from the Sostenuto project. However, since the IPA funded projects do not cover fees for the public institutions employees, the three Municipalities (Kotor, Tivat and Herceg Novi) should contribute to the process by covering the expenses of engagement of the working team members. The consultant recommended that the fees should be paid as an additional monthly salary, but we leave that decision to be made by the Municipalities in accordance with their internal procedures. According to the consultant’s experience, if the working team members are expected to work on the strategy as part of their everyday activities, without an additional compensation, the results may be unsatisfactory and the final product of lesser quality.

Some of the advantages the Municipalities may have from developing the Local Cultural Strategy are:

  1. The strategy will define strategic priorities in the field of culture
  2. Referring to a strategy of this kind can be a great advantage when applying for the EU funds, not only for the Municipalities but also for other organizations
  3. The strategy can serve as a framework for the implementation of projects at the local level (it can state priorities when announcing calls for proposals for NGOs)
  4. Cooperation of the three Municipalities in Boka Kotorska in the strategy developing process can be an example of good practice for other local self-governments in Montenegro, as well as a positive example in the region, etc.
  5. Visibility of the cooperation project between the Municipalities of Kotor, Tivat and Herceg Novi at the European level, through promoting the Sostenuto project results

 

Considering the on-going process (and hopefully near adoption) of the National Programme for the Development  of Culture 2011-16, developing of Local Cultural Strategies/Programmes will soon become legally binding for all local self-governments. We believe that the Sostenuto project is the right opportunity for the Municipalities of Kotor, Tivat and Herceg Novi to develop these documents, first in Montenegro, and with minimum funds invested. The obtaining of these good quality and useful documents can contribute to the cultural development of the Boka Kotorska communities.

EXPEDITIO is a non-governmental organization whose mission is to encourage sustainable spatial development in Montenegro and SEE region through activity in the fields of sustainable architecture, cultural heritage, urban planning and through projects that encourage overall development of the civil society. Expeditio was established in 1997.

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