Together with partners, we bring together decision-makers, and try to hold them accountable to behave responsibly; propose solutions to bilateral disputes in the wider Western Balkans and Southeast Europe; we build good neighborly relations; we help to get to know and understand the “other side” and its needs better.
BFPE has been contributing to the normalization of relations between Belgrade and Pristina since the very beginning of this process, in 2011. Some of the first projects where we tried, following the approach developed within the project “Regions”, to encourage cooperation and development, aimed at connecting municipalities in Serbia and Kosovo. Every year, one of the panels at the Belgrade Security Forum is dedicated to this topic. With the project “Changing Minds: Trust through Innovation”, we have connected, during four years (2017-2020), a large number of intellectuals, professionals and artists in two societies, engaged in different spheres of life. Finally, we tried to specifically support the technical dialogue conducted in Brussels with the initiative of KSPAG (Kosovo-Serbia Policy and Advocacy Group), which had over 80 different activities in 16 months of implementation: research (focus groups), round tables, media reports, publications.
BFPE believes in the region and regional cooperation. That is why over the years we have supported various initiatives and formats that have been established, in cooperation with local and international actors – such as the Berlin Process, or the creation of preconditions for the regional market. As a few organizations, through our flagship events and initiatives such as the Belgrade Security Forum, Balkan or former Belgrade dialogues, we advocate the accession of the Western Balkan “six” to the European Union and overcoming bilateral disputes that stand in the way.
A topic that has been in the center of interest of the professional community in previous years – the influence of the so-called “Third actors” in the Western Balkans, was in our focus, primarily through cooperation with partners from the countries of Visegrad. They examined the extent to which China’s influence – as the fastest-growing power – that it exerts in Central and Eastern Europe is similar to that it has gained in our country and the wider region. China is a big topic – with its appearance, it represents something new, and the debate is open to what extent it is new and a new model for the Western Balkans.
As researchers, BFPE program coordinators here collaborate with colleagues from other, research-intensive civil society organizations, and in particular contribute to the work of the National Convention, working groups 31 and 35.
All programs in this segment:
BFPE offers comprehensive programs, adapted to the actual needs and challenges met at both local and national level of government, celebrating participant experiences while avoiding ex cathedra approach.
From My Town to My Country: How to Ensure Serbia’s Development?
Project objective is to bring together representatives of local communities in order to stimulate the debate on the recognition of local specificities and identities as well as the importance and role local communities play in the development of Serbia.
Balkan Dialogues are a project of the EastWest Institute implemented in partnership with the Belgrade Fund for Political Excellence and with the support of the Balkan Trust for Democracy, which seeks to convene a series of high-level, discreet dialogues between experts from the European Union, the United States, Russia and China, as well as select participants representing the WB6 states. The principal goal of the Balkan Dialogues is to increase and deepen understanding and build trust between representatives of varying geopolitical interests present in the region today, and with nations of the Balkans, by providing a platform for discussion of those areas where competing interests or strategies could collide, and determining ways to mitigate and defuse tensions arising from this reality.
Sustainable Reintegration of Roma Returnees and Internally Displaced Persons in Niska Banja through Housing and Economic Empowerment
The project is a one-year program aimed at contributing to the full social and economic inclusion of returnees under the Readmission Agreement and IDPs who have decided to stay in Serbia by promoting a sustainable concept of (re) integration of returnees and IDPs, especially Roma, by applying a successfully tested model of cooperation between civil society organisations, local governments and the private sector.
Active Citizens – Better Society: Advocating for Cooperation and Democratic Development
The stability of democratic institutions and the rule of law is unthinkable without the active participation of civil society and citizens in public policy-making, problem solving, recognition and realisation of the potential that is necessary for progress of a community. Advocacy plays a key role in strengthening democratic processes and moving towards a democratic society based on a culture of citizen participation.
Local self governments, civil society organizations and media for more responsible public finances
The goal of the initiative is to establish continuous cooperation, understanding and constructive dialogue between local governments and non-state actors in local communities in the area of public finance management.
Consultations with civil society of Serbia on UN MDGs (millenium development goals) of sustainable development post-2015
The United Nations in Serbia, in cooperation with the Belgrade Fund for Political Excellence and SeConS, conducted national consultations www.srbijakakvuzelim.rs, which helped define development priorities for the period after 2015 and became an integral part of the global UN report.