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The EU awards a prize to the PARLOCAL project on public participation and participatory budgeting

The European Union has selected the Parlocal project, carried out by Malaga Provincial Council for two years, as an example of working on decentralized cooperation.

This project, called Networks for communication and reinforcement of capacities within the framework of participatory budgeting and other instruments of public policies related to participation, was approved as part of the call for grants from the Non-state Actors and Local Authorities Programme of the European Commission-EuropeAid, and was carried out with the Dominican Federation of Municipalities (in the Dominican Republic) and the Municipality of Paysandu (in Uruguay) with a budget of around one million euros.

The Deputy President of Malaga Provincial Council, Carlos Conde, who is head of the European Resources Service, welcomed the European Union's recognition and stressed that this project "has enabled the exchange of experiences from different viewpoints and perspectives on something as relevant for the workings of democracy as the search for formulas and tools to improve public participation."

The initiatives and results in the Parlocal project were presented at the Third Seminars on Decentralized Cooperation for Development, organized jointly by the European Commission and the Committee of the Regions (the European Unions' consultative body representing local and regional authorities), which took place on 9 and 10 April in Brussels.

These Seminars focused on five themes, based on the proposals that local and regional authorities sent to the Committee of the Regions:

  • Cross-border and interregional cooperation, and decentralized cooperation to support regional integration.
  • The role of local and regional authorities in the international development process after 2015.
  • The challenges of decentralization in developing countries.
  • Reinforcement of the capacities of regional groups to support of their development.
  • New European Commission Communiqué on Local Authorities in the field of development.

The PARLOCAL project

The European Parlocal project had a training component, involving the collaboration of more than 20 Spanish and international institutions (including universities, institutes and research centres) linked to the study and implementation of participatory democracy and participatory budgeting.

Research studies have also been undertaken to find out about public participation experiences in 36 municipalities in Uruguay, the Dominican Republic and Spain, including five in the province of Malaga: Alameda, Archidona, Casabermeja, Humilladero and Teba.

Finally, five publications have been published and four audiovisual projects have been produced.

All this material is available here.

PARLOCAL project webpage.

Source: Malaga Provincial Council