Project

APVV-19-0108: Innovations in Local Government Budgeting in Slovakia

Goal: Budgeting of local governments is a field which attracted huge attention recently. This fact is linked not only to decentralization trends (e.g. implementation of various tools of fiscal decentralization), but also to recent experience with impacts of global financial crisis that was a serious challenge for both central governments and local governments at municipal as well as regional level. However, local budgets cannot be understood as purely economic tools. On contrary, they are also programs that show values and priorities of relevant local governments. On this matter it is no surprise that in this field one can identify various innovations of both economic and broader socio-political nature. Our research intention is associated with three clear innovations that has affected budgeting of local governments in all economically developed countries, namely performance budgeting, gender (sensitive) budgeting, and participatory budgeting. Although reasons of their implementation as well as their economic-political nature are different, each of them aims to improve budgeting processes, and they should bring some certain positive effects in the field of public service delivery. Unfortunately, no comprehensive analysis aimed at these innovations as well as their impacts has been done in Slovakia. Therefore, our main research objective is to fill in this research gap. On one hand, we want to find out how much they are being used, on the other hand, we want to analyse models of their use drivers and barriers of their implementation, as well as both intended and unintended outcomes. Fur this purposes interdisciplinary research team will use research tools of desk research and also field research. The research team expects to bring no only new knowledge in regard to use of these budgeting innovations in practice of the local governments, but it has also an ambition to contribute significantly to present international scientific discourse in this field.

The project consortium consists of four universities, namely Comenius University in Bratislava, University of Economics in Bratislava, Matej Bel University in Banská Bystrica, and University of SS. Cyril and Methodius in Trnava. However, it is open for cooperation with other Slovak and international partners (institutional as well as individual).

Date: 1 July 2020 - 30 June 2023

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Jozef Gašparík
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Abstrakt / Abstract Výskum sa zameriava na analýzu dát, ktoré zbierajú samotné samosprávy o obyvateľoch, ktorí sa zúčasťňujú hlasovania na participatívnych rozpočtoch. Metódou výskumu je analýza dát, ktoré samosprávy zbierajú v kontexte participatívneho rozpočtu. Za výskumnú vzorku boli vybraté dve samosprávy, z ktorých jednou je magistrát mesta Brna a druhou je mestská časť Bratislava-Nové Mesto. Z dát vyplýva, že kým mesto Brno prostredníctvom uzavretých otázok získava dáta s relatívne širokej vzorky, mestská časť Bratislava-Nové Mesto využíva kombináciu otvorených a uzavretých otázok na malej vzorke. Mesto Brno zároveň dáta zbiera dlhodobo počas celého obdobia fungovania participatívneho rozpočtu, zatiaľ čo v prípade mestskej časti Bratilavy išlo o ad hoc zber dát, ktorý obsahoval aj otázky zamerané na iné oblasti než samotný participatívny rozpočtu. V závere je teda možné konštatovať, že mesto Brno zbiera dáta o svojich participantoch vo väčšom časovom rozsahu a zamerané na jednu tému. This research focuses on the analysis of data collected by local governments themselves on the population which participate in participatory budgeting. The research method is the analysis of data that local governments collect in the context of participatory budgeting. Two municipalities were selected for the research sample, one of which is the city of Brno and the other is the city district of Bratislava-Nové Mesto. The data show that while the city of Brno obtains data with a relatively commonly available sample through closed questions, the city district of Bratislava-Nové Mesto uses the possibility of open and closed questions on a small pattern. At the same time, the city of Brno has been collecting data for a long time during the entire period of operation of the participatory budget, while in the case of the city part of Bratislava it was an ad hoc data collection, which also included issues focused on other areas than the participatory budget itself. In conclusion, it can be stated that the city of Brno collects data on its participants in a larger time horizon focused on one topic. Kľúčové slová: participatívny rozpočet, Brno, dáta, prieskum / Keywords: participatory budgeting, City o Brno, data, research PARTICIPATÍVNE ROZPOČTOVANIE Participatívne rozpočtovanie je už tri dekády súčasťou rozhodovania o verejných finaniách. Od jeho počiatkov v latinsko-americkom Porto Alegres sa stal súčasťou aj európskej politiky prevažne na lokálnej úrovni. Výnimkou nie je ani Stredná a Východná Európa, vrátane Slovenska a Česka, kde sa tento nástroj používa približne od roku 2011 na Slovensku a 2014 v Česku. V súčasnosti ho využíva viac ako 60 samospráv na Slovensku a viac ako 140 v Česku. (Hrabinová a kol. 2020, Černý 2018) Okrem obcí, miest a mestských častí sa stal súčasťou aj regionálnej politiky niektorých samosprávnych krajov. V súčasnosti môžeme tiež pozorovať príklad implementácii tohto nástroja aj v rámci organizácií v zriaďovateľskej pôsobnosti niektorých samospráv. Sem patria napríklad stredné a základné školy, ktoré boli implementované v rámci miest a krajov. Participatívne rozpočtovanie sa v niektorých príkladoch stalo zásadnou súčasťou politiky samosprávy. Mesto Brno, ktoré na účely participatívneho rozpočtu alokovalo najvyššiu čiastku v Česku a na Slovensku sa v minulosti rozhodlo ukotviť tento proces aj v rámci štatútu mesta. Participatívne rozpočtovanie bolo predmetom viacerých odborných výskumov a štúdií. Napríklad oblasťou Latinskej Ameriky, ktorá sledovala počiatočnú fázu aplikovania tohto nástroja v Porto Alegre (Goldfrank, 2007)
Daniel Klimovský
added an update
On the 6th June 2022, the Institute for Public Affairs (IVO) in cooperation with the Association of Self-Governing Regions (SK8) organized a press conference at which they presented a recent publication (a book) on the position and operation of regional self-government in Slovakia. This book entitled "20 rokov samosprávnych krajov na Slovensku 2001 - 2021" ("20 Years of Self-Governing Regions in Slovakia, 2001-2021") was appreciated directly at the press conference not only by representatives of self-governing regions, but also by representatives of municipalities and cities, or by representatives of the Supreme Audit Office of the Slovak Republic. In addition to the editors, several authors of individual chapters also took part in this event.
Daniel Klimovský presented his contributions and also the chapter that is the output of this project:
This chapter was written in collaboration with Tomáš Černěnko and its authors focused on the possibilities of further development of regional self-government in Slovakia. They stressed, inter alia, the necessity to increase the degree of fiscal autonomy of the self-governing regions in Slovakia.
Information about the press conference, as well as about the book itself, was provided by several national media. The book can be found here: https://www.ivo.sk/buxus/docs//publikacie/subory/20_rokov_samospravnych_krajov_na_Slovensku_2001-2021.pdf
 
Daniel Klimovský
added an update
A project event was organized within the schedule of the 30th NISPAcee Annual Conference in Bucharest, Romania on June 3, 2022. It had a nature of joint session and its main goal was to facilitate more intensive research relations between researchers from two NISPAcee working groups, namely the WG1 on Local Government and the WG5 on Public Finance and Public Financial Management. The joint session was focused on innovations in public budgeting at sub-national levels.
The session was chaired by Mr. Daniel Klimovský, and the contents of the presented papers led to vibrant and interesting discussions. Some results of this project were presented by Ms. Martina Balážová and Mr. Jozef Gašparík, who delivered a paper entitled "Who participates in participatory budgeting? Unravelling of who shows up". They analyzed participation in recent years of participatory budgeting implemented in Brno (Czech Republic), and they offered a quantitative analysis.
 
Daniel Klimovský
added an update
Workshop on "Long-term Sustainability of Co-Creation and Co-production" was held in Ghent, Belgium on May 23 and May 24, 2022. Organizers of this event were Trui Steen (KU Leuven), Noella Edelmann (University for Continuing Education Krems), Taco Brandsen (Radboud University), and Bram Verschuere (Ghent University). The workshop was hosted by the University of Ghent, and co-financed by two projects within the H2020, namely the inGOV project and the Interlink project.
Participants focused on co-creation and/or co-production, and they presented results of their recent or ongoing research activities. Daniel Klimovský took part in this event, too.
 
Daniel Klimovský
added an update
Ondřej Ryboň, a representative of Agora Central Europe, delivered a guest lecture focused on citizen participation at local level for students of the Department of Political Science, Faculty of Arts, Comenius University in Bratislava on April 25, 2022.
Agora CE was founded more than ten years ago as a non-governmental and non-profit organization in order to support open dialogue and involvement of citizens in public affairs. Its official mission is to strengthen the process of democratization of society in the Czech Republic (and, thanks to international activities, also abroad).
Ondřej Ryboň focused on the importance of inclusion in terms of real citizen participation and various communication techniques in his lecture. A specific part of his lecture was focused on participatory budgeting, its strengths and weaknesses. In the final part he went out of the university building with the participating students in order to introduce to them a method of feeling maps. He tried to demonstrate basic rules and steps of surveying people’s emotional response to their environment as they walk through some street or other public space of a particular urban area. For this purpose, the neighbourhood next to Comenius University in Bratislava was used.
 
Daniel Klimovský
added an update
Tomáš Černěnko delivered a guest lecture for students of the Faculty of National Economy, University of Economics in Bratislava on April 11, 2022.
His lecture was entitled "Efektívnosť rozpočtového hospodárenia miestnych samospráv v súčasných ekonomických podmienkach" ("Efficiency of Public Budgeting of Local Governments in the Current Economic Conditions"). He addressed several important issues linked to efficiency of public budgeting at the local level in his lecture. In addition, he presented several practical examples from local governments in Slovakia and during the discussion with participating students he pointed out main limitations of local public budgeting in Slovakia.
 
Daniel Klimovský
added an update
Andrea Čajková delivered a guest lecture for students of the Faculty of National Economy, University of Economics in Bratislava on April 4, 2022.
Her lecture was entitled "Programové rozpočtovanie - výzvy a bariéry" ("Programme Budgeting - Challenges and Barriers"). In her lecture, she focused on both the theoretical background of this kind of budgeting and practical experience. She presented especially experience from Slovakia, and she pointed out not only the present state but also events that led to introduction of the programme budgeting at various levels of government.
 
Daniel Klimovský
added 2 research items
Authors of this chapter try to identify three important challenges linked to status and performance of self-governing regions in Slovakia that should be addressed in the near future. They do not intend to propose any "final solution"; instead, they rather formulate a few provocative ideas in order to start some broader discussion.
Book review of the following publication (in Slovak): WILLIAMS, D. – WAISANEN, D. 2020. Real Money, Real Power? The Challenges with Participatory Budgeting in New York City [Skutočné peniaze, skutočná sila? Výzvy s participatívnym rozpočtovaním v New Yorku]. Cham: Palgrave Macmillan. 2020. 112 s. ISBN 978-3-030-59200-4.
Daniel Klimovský
added an update
Daniel Klimovský delivered a guest lecture at the Institute of Political Studies, Faculty of Social Sciences, Charles University in Prague on March 31, 2022.
His lecture was entitled "Participatívne rozpočtovanie: medzinárodné skúsenosti" ("Participatory Budgeting: International Experience") and besides various international experience with participatory budgeting, its diffusion and adoption in very diverse conditions, Daniel Klimovský also presented selected results of this research project and promoted project itself as well as its activities.
 
Matúš Novák
added a research item
At present, the influence of individual communities of interest on the financing of regional development projects as a space for civic activities in the public interest provided as publicly available services that the region is not executing in an unsatisfactory manner or is not executing at all for various reasons is actively resonating). The article deals with the issue of participatory budgeting as one of the latest budgetary innovations in the field of public sector management and aims to identify the challenges and barriers to the implementation of participatory budgeting in Slovakia at the regional level. It also analyses the implementation of this tool in the regional authorities in the conditions of the Slovak Republic before and during the Covid-19 pandemic, which has significantly affected public budgets and their redistribution. The methodological approach applied in this research includes a systematic review of the literature on participatory budgeting concerning analyses, comparisons, clarification of causal relations, systematization, abstraction, and concretization, and results of researchers´ activities related to the subject of the conducted research. The chapter “Results” presents the findings of a survey carried out in all eight regional authorities of self-governing regions, and show the extent to which the issue in question has been affected by the ongoing pandemic. The paper provides an overview of the challenges and barriers to PB in Slovakia at the regional level.
Daniel Klimovský
added an update
The Faculty of Business and Economics of the Mendel University in Brno, Czech Republic, organized an international conference entitled "24th conference: Economic Competitiveness and Sustainability" on March 24-25, 2022. The conference was organized in a hybrid form.
Within the schedule of this conference, our project event - namely a special session entitled "Innovations in Local Government Budgeting in Terms of Economic Competitiveness and Sustainability" - was organized, too. Besides a few members of the core research team (i.e., Mária Murray Svidroňová, Juraj Nemec, and Daniel Klimovský), several other researchers, who had already cooperated with us, took part in the session, for instance Soňa Kukučková, Irena Szarowská, and Eduard Bakoš. Daniel Klimovský was a chair of the session:
Paper: The impact of participatory budgeting on civic participation
Authors: Ms. Mária Murray Svidroňová, Ms. Alena Kaščáková, and Mr. Bohumír Krátky
Paper: Program‑performance based budgeting on local government level in Slovakia: unfulfilled expectations
Author: Mr. Juraj Nemec
Paper: Barriers to participatory budgeting in the COVID‑19 crisis and their identification in Czech municipalities
Authors: Ms. Soňa Kukučková, and Mr. Eduard Bakoš
Paper: Can be found a more transparent system of regional financing?
Author: Ms. Irena Szarowská
Paper: Recent Innovations in Local Government Budgeting in Slovakia: Practical and Research Perspectives
Author: Mr. Daniel Klimovský
Each presentation was followed by the discussant´s comments, concerns or recommendations as well as open discussion among participants. From this perspective the session was very interesting and both presenters and discussants tackled several important issues.
In addition, some of the project research results were presented also in one of the other conference sessions:
Paper: Regional self‑government and strategic planning: comparison of cases in Czechia and Slovakia
Authors: Ms. Ivana Butoracová Šindleryová, and Mr. Michal Garaj
 
Daniel Klimovský
added an update
Vladimír Bačík (Comenius University in Bratislava, Faculty of Natural Sciences, Department of Economic and Social Geography, Demography and Territorial Development) delivered a guest lecture at the Faculty of Arts, Comenius University in Bratislava on March 14, 2022.
His lecture entitled "Charakteristika vybraných geografických aspektov e-Governmentu na Slovensku s dôrazom na obecné samosprávy" ("Selected Geographical Aspects of e-Government in Slovakia with Special Regard to e-Government at Local Level") consisted of two parts. In the first one, he introduced e-Government as a concept, including elements like e-participation, and he compared the recent achievements of Slovakia in the field of development of e-Government with achievements of other countries in the same field. The second part of his lecture was focused on both attitudes of representatives of local governments in Slovakia towards applicability of various e-tools and activities of local governments in the field of e-Government.
 
Daniel Klimovský
added an update
A book entitled "Participatívne rozpočtovanie (kontexty, modely a praktické skúsenosti)" / "Participatory Budgeting (Contexts, Models, and Practical Experience)" was promoted recently at the web-page of the Faculty of Arts, Comenius University in Bratislava.
In addition, the book was distributed to all relevant university and public libraries in both Slovakia and the Czech Republic in recent weeks. The book can be found also here:
 
Daniel Klimovský
added an update
Thanks to numerous activities in research as well as consulting in the field of public administration with special regard to local and regional levels of government, Daniel Klimovský was invited to become a member of the Board of Advisers to the Prime Minister of the Slovak Republic. He accepted this invitation in December 2021 and he has become the Adviser to the Prime Minister of the Slovak Republic in the Field of Public Administration and Regional Development.
 
Daniel Klimovský
added a research item
The 8 November 2021 became a historic moment for all local governments in Slovakia that were interested in participatory budgeting. On this day, the Slovak Charter of Good Participatory Budgeting Principles was announced. In this short informative article, we would like to offer the insiders’ story – or, more precisely, an inside view – on the efforts and activities that led to the official announcement of the charter.
Martina Balážová
added a research item
Participatory budgeting (PB) allows citizens to be a part of the decision-making processes on public money expenditure. It increases citizens ‘participation in public affairs, strengthens deliberation and engagement. Active participation can strengthen the role of the citizen, and in addition it can create a common knowledgebase of collective issues and help to prevent and solve power centralisation, leading to a democratic and equal society. In the academic literature, PB is often referred to as “traveling policy innovation”, and since the original case in Porto Alegre, it has taken a path that originated in values such as reduction of corruption and empowerment of marginalized groups. Nevertheless, there is currently a lively academic discussion about PB it lacks a connection of its impacts on youth segment in general. The aim of this case study of Kutná Hora in the Czech Republic, where the youth segment was included into the process. In this case not only students at high schools but also primary schools’ students with organizational help of student’s councils were participating in the budget allocation decision process and such contributed to the innovative and inclusive local government. Paper gives an overview of PB process creation and its structure in Kutná Hora that led to youth engagement on local level (local PB).
Erika Neubauerová
added a research item
Abstrakt: Participácia občanov na procese politického rozhodovania je základným predpokladom stabilnej demokracie. Aktívnejšie zapojenie občanov do verejného rozhodovania zaznamenalo v poslednom období pokrok v európskom meradle. Príspevok je venovaný skúmaniu inovatívnych foriem občianskej participácie s dôrazom na tzv. mini-verejnosť (mini-public). Príspevok obsahuje aj praktické príklady občianskej participácie na rôznych úrovniach vo vybraných krajinách. Kľúčové slová: občianska participácia, inovatívne formy občianskej participácie, mini-verejnosť
Daniel Klimovský
added a research item
Participatory budgeting (PB) is one of recent democratic innovations to support public involvement in public budgeting. Despite the fact that the first initiative leading to adoption of this innovation appeared in Slovakia ten years ago, this issue has not been regulated by law. Whilst a few NGOs in cooperation with representatives of relevant local governments were the main entrepreneurs in the field of PB during the first years of its use in Slovakia, the Office of Slovak Government Plenipotentiary for Civil Society Development have begun to support its use since 2017. Unsurprisingly, local governments in Slovakia have different experiences with its adoption and use, and even the models that these local governments have employed differ quite significantly from each other. The aim of this paper is to point out the strengths and weaknesses of missing legal regulation in the field of PB from the perspective of local governments or NGOs. A significant diversity in the adoption and use of this innovation is presented as one of the clear outcomes of the above-mentioned missing regulation, and three possible scenarios of further development in this field are offered in the conclusions.
Daniel Klimovský
added a research item
This is a summary article of the SJPS thematic issue on participatory budgeting in the Central and Eastern European region. Its authors provide an overview of the diffusion of participatory budgeting, and they classify relevant countries in terms of the pace of this diffusion into four different groups: frontrunners, early majority, later majority, and lagging adopters. In addition, they uncover various diffusion mechanisms that have been used. Since the research articles included in this thematic issue unpack various factors that influence the diffusion of the innovative practice of participatory budgeting in the specific settings of Central and Eastern Europe, the main goal of this article is to sum up their crucial findings and formulate several conclusions, including a few avenues for further research. A clear majority of countries in the region have already collected a relevant amount of experience with the adoption and further use of participatory budgeting. An analysis of the individual experiences reveals that the position and characteristics of mayors, organizational resources, and available capacities, as well as the quality of public trust, are likely to be important factors that determine the adoption and use of participatory budgeting in the region.
Daniel Klimovský
added an update
A brief report about a conference entitled "Ako zefektívniť priamu účasť obyvateľov na miestnej samospráve v podmienkach inteligentných miest a obcí" ("How to Make the Direct Citizen Participation in Local Self-Government More Efficient in the Conditions of Smart Cities and Municipalities") was published in the Bratislava Law Review. Its author, Mr. Ľudovít Máčaj, mentioned also active participation of a few members of our research team, namely Ms. Kristína Jančovičová Bognárová, Ms. Erika Neubauerová, Ms. Alena Zubaľová, and Mr. Daniel Klimovský.
 
Daniel Klimovský
added an update
The 30th NISPAcee Annual Conference entitled "Crises, Vulnerability and Resilience in Public Administration" will be held in Bucharest, Romania (June 2-4, 2022). A main organizer of the event is the Network of Institutes and Schools of Public Administration in Central and Eastern Europe (NISPAcee) and this annual conference will be co-organized by a local organizer, namely the Faculty of Business and Public Administration, University of Bucharest.
Programme of the event will include a joint session entitled "Innovations in Local Government Budgeting in Central and Eastern Europe: Common Objectives, Different Outcomes". Mr. Daniel Klimovský and Mr. Juraj Nemec, who are also coordinators of two NISPAcee working groups, initiated this session as one of the events of this research project. A main goal of the joint session is to facilitate a meaningful and useful sharing of knowledge linked to the phenomenon of budgetary innovations among scholars from various European countries and the CEE region in particular.
Joint session of the NISPAcee WG1 and WG5: https://www.nispa.org/conference2022.php?cid=300&sid=2402
 
Daniel Klimovský
added an update
Juraj Nemec took part in the Panel 11 ("Local democracy in V4 countries – new developments") of an international conference entitled “V4. Past. Present. Future”. The conference was held in Warsaw, Poland from 16 to 17 December 2021. Due to numerous anti-pandemic measures adopted by governments in the Central and Eastern European region at the turn of November and December 2021, the conference was organized as a hybrid event. The panel was chaired by Izolda Bokszczanin (University of Warsaw, Poland), and researchers from all Visegrad Four countries (i.e. from the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, and Slovakia) participated in the panel session.
Presentation: Participatory budgeting in the Czech Republic and Slovakia
Authors: Mr. Juraj Nemec & Mr. Daniel Klimovský
A presentation elaborated by Juraj Nemec and Daniel Klimovský was focused on experiences of local governments in the Czech Republic and Slovakia with adoption and further usage of participatory budgeting. Various implementation issues were pointed out and discussed in the presentation.
 
Juraj Nemec
added a research item
The importance of high quality public sector control is an obvious fact – without efficient and effective control system, the risk of wasting public funds is critical. The goal of this article was to evaluate efficiency of internal control systems on the level of regional self-administration in the Slovakia. The findings clearly document many problems related to the performance of regional control bodies and on this basis purposes and possible actions are proposed. From the point of view of "fiscal rules", the research, for example, pointed to an exceptionally poor situation in compliance with the rules and conditions of budgetary management in the Bystrica region in the period 2006-2009. The research also proves that one of the key problems of nonconceptual and non-transparent asset management of regions is confusing and disadvantageous asset sales. The quantitative analysis suggests that the efficiency (intensity) of the functioning of regional control systems does not have a direct impact on the monitored output indicators. The implemented DEA also indicates the low effectivity of the internal control systems of the regions. Our findings fully prove that there are no truly efficient systems of external and internal control at the level of self-governing regions in Slovakia. The factor of high autonomy of regions in the financial management and disposal of assets in connection with the identified high degree of failure of the regional control system generates a clear need to strengthen the system of internal control of regions, based on systemic and procedural changes.
Daniel Klimovský
added an update
The Charter of Good Participatory Budgeting was officially announced in Slovakia a few weeks ago. To support awareness of its contents, some promotional articles were published in December 2021:
EURACTIV.sk: Docent Klimovský: Dôveru v štát vieme budovať aj tým, že dáme ľuďom možnosť podieľať sa na rozdelení peňazí
Daniel Klimovský was interviewed by Michal Hudec from EURACTIV.sk. He focused on the Charter of Good Participatory Budgeting in particular. However, he also explained some barriers and drivers linked to this democratic innovation in Slovakia.
Obecné noviny: Charta dobrého participatívneho rozpočtovania
A brief promotional article about the Charter of Good Participatory Budgeting as well as its contents was published in a weekly called "Obecné noviny". The article also includes statements of representatives of a few local governments.
In addition, the text of the Charter has been translated in English, and one can find its English version in the attachment of this news or at:
 
Ivana Butoracova Sindleryova
added a research item
Strategic planning is a tool for local and regional authorities to formulate the expected future status. The meaning of strategic planning creates space for identifying problems, setting goals, implementing solutions, measuring the effectiveness or monitoring the success of implemented measures in all areas on which planning focuses. The main goal of the paper is to create a summary of the adopted strategic plans in the environment of regional self­ government. The sub-objectives focus on determining the presence of selected analytical categories. At the same time, it seeks a comparative perspective between individual regional governments with the determination of similarities or differences. It focuses exclusively on the environment of the Slovak Republic. Entities represent the level of regional self-government in the form of local authorities. The subject of the analysis is focused on strategic planning. The primary source of data for the analysis are the official strategic plans (concepts, strategies, plans) published on the official websites of selfgovernmet regions .. In the documents, the searched categories are described in the methodical procedure of analysis processing. Data evaluation uses basic descriptive statistics with graphical comparative evaluation through tables.
Daniel Klimovský
added an update
The Faculty of Business and Economics, Mendel University in Brno will organize its 24th international conference "Economic Competitiveness and Sustainability" (ECOS). The conference will be organized as a hybrid event and it will be held in Brno, Czech Republic (March 24-25, 2022).
A conference agenda will include a special session entitled "Innovations in Local Government Budgeting in Terms of Economic Competitiveness and Sustainability"; this session is one of our project events. It is expected that participants of this session will focus on recent experience with innovations in local government budgeting (e.g., performance-based budgeting, program budgeting, participatory budgeting, pro-poor budgeting) that might bring some relevant outcomes in terms of economic competitiveness or sustainability.
24th international conference "Economic Competitiveness and Sustainability" (ECOS): https://ecos.mendelu.cz/
 
Daniel Klimovský
added an update
A project meeting focused on evaluation of the project implementation in 2021 was held on December 7, 2021. Due to several anti-pandemic restrictions and a nationwide lockdown in Slovakia, the meeting was organized as a virtual event (MS Teams).
A main presentation was delivered by Daniel Klimovský, who is a principal researcher of this project. Besides evaluation of the project implementation he pointed out both further opportunities and estimated risks. Juraj Halas, who is a financial manager of the project, offered brief information about the project and its implementation from the financial point of view.
 
Erika Neubauerová
added a research item
Zastúpenie žien v politických štruktúrach, ale aj problematika volebných kvót, sa čoraz častejšie stávajú predmetom diskusií, výskumu, ale aj reálnou možnosťou, ako ovplyvniť ciele a nástroje verejnej politiky na všetkých vládnych úrovniach. Garancia určitého podielu alebo počtu žien v zastupiteľských orgánoch či na významných monokratických postoch prináša mnoho otázok a argumentačných polemík. Zámerom príspevku je poukázať na trendy zastúpenia žien v politických štruktúrach v krajinách Európy s osobitným akcentom na genézu zastupiteľskej demokracie na úrovni Európskeho parlamentu. V neposlednom rade je pozornosť zameraná aj na špecifiká a bariéry uplatňovania princípov rodovej rovnosti v podmienkach Slovenska.
Jozef Gašparík
added a research item
This paper offers an evaluation of participatory budgeting in the City of Brno (Czech Republic) in terms of a theoretical concept of participatory budgeting developed by Wampler. A set of interviews with coordinators of the mentioned participatory budgeting was employed to collect relevant data. Results of presented analysis show a few significant differences between practice of participatory budgeting in B characteristics based mostly on case of Porto Alegre.
Daniel Klimovský
added a research item
This textbook entitled "Participatory Budgeting (Contexts, Models, and Practical Experience)" is focused on participatory budgeting and it was written by seven authors from various universities in Slovakia and the Czech Republic. It consists of four chapters: (1) Civil Society and the Third Sector as Drivers of Public Participation; (2) Participatory Budgeting as a Tool of Public Participation; (3) Practical Experience with Participatory Budgeting; (4) Participatory Budgeting in the Czech Republic and Slovakia. In addition, a new Charter of Good Participatory Budgeting can be found in Appendix 1. Last but not least, Keywords and Questions & Tasks follow each chapter.
Matúš Novák
added a research item
The paper deals with the issue of joint municipal offices, as one of the forms of merging municipalities in Slovakia. The aim of this paper is to consolidate theoretical knowledge in the field of inter-municipal cooperation in the Slovak Republic, also to find out the legislative conditions for the establishment of Joint Municipal Offices in Slovakia and evaluate the functioning of the Joint Municipal Office for Spatial Planning and Building Regulations in Stará Ľubovňa in 2020. several research methods were used, especially the method of analysis and synthesis, but also the method of concretization.
Daniel Klimovský
added a research item
In this chapter we take a closer look at the participatory budgeting in Slovakia: how is it implemented, what rules does it follow, how the process looks, and what the objectives are. Based on the desk research and descriptive analysis we map examples of good practice and point out obstacles that limit broader use of participatory budgeting in the Slovak Republic. What makes it interesting, is very fragmented level of local governments with a strong mayor form for the local government system. The chapter presents the development of the participatory budgeting, starting in the first three local governments, spreading to 54 municipalities that currently use this tool (January 2020). The highlights on participatory budgeting process in selected local governments are presented and different conditions in the given municipalities are analysed. Furthermore, interesting cases of participatory budgeting at the regional level are described as well as an interesting initiative of participatory budgeting in secondary and grammar schools.
Tomáš Černěnko
added a research item
Women represent more than half of the population of Slovakia. We are therefore interested in the extent to which their needs are reflected in the public space in the production of public services. As a large part of public everyday consumption services is produced locally, we will focus our paper on the local government units. The aim of our paper is to find out whether the structure of expenditures is changing together with the level of representation of women in the local council or in the position of mayor. To do so, we use a regression analysis of selected groups of local government expenditures (expressed through the COFOG classification). At the same time, we wanted to find out whether the level of representation of women in local councils differs across Slovakia and, if so, in what way. The results show that the representation of women in local councils is not the same across Slovakia. Likewise, we were not able to prove the influence of the number of women in elected positions on the structure of local government expenditures in Slovakia. One of main reasons could be the fragmented administrative structure of the Slovak Republic.
Daniel Klimovský
added an update
Four members of the research team took part in a conference entitled "Ako zefektívniť priamu účasť obyvateľov na miestnej samospráve v podmienkach inteligentných miest a obcí" ("How to Make the Direct Public Participation in Local Self-Government More Efficient in Smart Cities and Municipalities") on November 19, 2021. Main organizer of the conference, the Faculty of Law of Comenius University in Bratislava, organized this event as a virtual event (MS Teams) due to recent negative pandemic development in Slovakia.
Paper: Vybrané formy občianskej participácie (Selected Forms of Civic Participation)
Authors: Ms. Kristína Jančovičová Bognárová, Ms. Erika Neubauerová & Ms. Alena Zubaľová
Paper: Participatívne rozpočtovanie: absencia legislatívnej úpravy a doterajšie skúsenosti samospráv (Participatory Budgeting: Missing Legal Regulation and the Present Experience of Local Governments)
Author: Mr. Daniel Klimovský
Kristína Jančovičová Bognárová, Erika Neubauerová and Alena Zubaľová focused on several forms of civic participation in their paper. They dealt not only with the Slovak experience but also with some international experience. Daniel Klimovský presented an analysis on how the local governments´ representatives (both elected and non-elected) perceive the missing legal regulation in the field of participatory budgeting in Slovakia.
 
Daniel Klimovský
added an update
Daniel Klimovský took part in a seminar entitled "The COVID-19 Pandemic and Governments´ Responses: Challenges and/or Opportunities?" on November 16-17, 2021. The seminar was held in Vienna, Austria, and its main organizer was the FH Campus Wien: University of Applied Sciences. This seminar was one of the planned public events of a small research network that includes researchers from Austria, Slovakia and the Czech Republic. The network was established in December 2020 and since then it has focused its activities on challenges of the rapid adoption of knowledge management solutions during the COVID-19 pandemic crisis, and outcomes of existing or newly adopted knowledge management measures. On this matter, some cases and examples linked to public budgeting under the pandemic circumstances were presented during the seminar, too.
 
Daniel Klimovský
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Three members of our research team - namely Daniel Klimovský, Martina Balážová and Jozef Gašparík - delivered a series of guest lectures at the Faculty of Economics, Technical University of Košice (Slovakia) on November 16, 2021. The series of these lectures was organized by means of the Webex as an online event.
Lecture: Participatívna tvorba verejných politík a participatívne rozpočtovanie (Participatory Policy Making and Participatory Budgeting)
Lecturer: Mr. Daniel Klimovský
Lecture: Participatívne rozpočtovanie pre mladých: Príklad Kutnej Hory, 2019 - 2020 (Participatory Budgeting for the Youth: The Case of Kutná Hora, 2019-2020)
Lecturer: Ms. Martina Balážová
Lecture: Participatívny rozpočet v meste Brno (Participatory Budget of the City of Brno)
Lecturer: Mr. Jozef Gašparík
Daniel Klimovský began his lecture with a theoretical framework linked to public participation. Then he focused himself on participatory budgeting, its pros and cons, and in the last part of his lecture, he provided an overview of arrival and further travel of participatory budgeting in Slovakia. After a rich discussion, Martina Balážová and Jozef Gašparík followed with presentations of their case-based lectures. Both of them presented practical examples of successful initiatives of participatory budgeting. Whilst Martina Balážová presented the case of Kutná Hora, where participatory budgeting has successfully been adopted also at the school level, Jozef Gašparík offered an interesting and well-known case of participatory budgeting in the city of Brno. A discussion that followed their lectures was also very interesting and students were eager to get new knowledge about this democratic innovation.
 
Daniel Klimovský
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Juraj Nemec, a member of the research team, took part in a research seminar entitled "Modernization of Public Finances" on November 16, 2021. The research seminar was organized as an online event of the Higher School of Economics, Moscow, Russia.
Presentation: Participatory budgeting in Central and Eastern Europe
Author: Mr. Juraj Nemec
Juraj Nemec presented some results of an international research initiative focused on participatory budgeting in Central and Eastern Europe. All results, including results of our research project (a chapter on experience from Slovakia; authors: Ms. Mária Murray Svidroňová and Mr. Daniel Klimovský), will be published soon in a book entitled "International Trends in Participatory Budgeting: Between Trivial Pursuits and Best Practices"; edited by Michiel S. de Vries, Juraj Nemec and David Špaček.
 
Daniel Klimovský
added an update
8 November 2021 became a historic moment for participatory budgeting in Slovakia. The Slovak Charter of Good Participatory Budgeting Principles was announced on this day.
Our research activities attracted attention of numerous local governments, NGOs, and the Office of the Government Plenipotentiary for Civil Society Development. This created a nice opportunity to interconnect a practical demand with our research efforts as well as outcomes. The combination of common interests, overlapping efforts, and a mutual understanding by participating representatives of all parties soon led to some synergies.
A working group on the further spread of participatory budgeting in Slovakia was established in December 2020. The group involved several experts with rich practical experience (they represented both relevant local governments and NGOs or local initiatives) and several scholars. The Office of the Slovak Government Plenipotentiary for Civil Society Development, represented by Ms. Alexandra Hrabinová, became a sponsor of this activity, and the Faculty of Arts, Comenius University in Bratislava became the main facilitator. Mr. Daniel Klimovský was the university’s main figure in this initiative, and a few other research team members (namely Ms. Martina Balážová, Mr. Jakub Bardovič, and Mr. Jozef Gašparík) also participated in the activities of the working group. Members of the working group found out that Slovak local governments and relevant NGOs could appreciate the charter of participatory budgeting instead of any strictly binding legal regulations in this field. They were inspired by charters that were recently adopted in Portugal and Scotland.
Although the very first draft of the charter contained more than ten principles, its final version ended up consisting of just nine: (1) careful planning, (2) openness, (3) inclusiveness, (4) motivation and empowerment, (5) deliberativeness, (6) education, (7) credibility, (8) resilience, and (9) creativity and flexibility.
The final text of the charter offers a definition of each principle in terms of participatory budgeting as well as a to-do-list for each of them. Thanks to this format, everyone who wants to adopt good participatory budgeting can follow a set of clear recommendations. However, the authors of the charter stressed in its introduction that the charter was not a binding document and should rather be used as a source of inspiration.
The charter is officially accessible at the following website:
 
Daniel Klimovský
added an update
In recent months, several members of the research team (namely Ms. Mária Murray Svidroňová, Ms. Martina Balážová, Mr. Jakub Bardovič, and Mr. Jozef Gašparík) in cooperation with two guests from the Czech universities (i.e. Ms. Soňa Kukučková from Mendel University in Brno, and Mr. Eduard Bakoš from Masaryk University in Brno) and under leadership of Mr. Daniel Klimovský were writing a text of an expected book focused on participatory budgeting. Their mission has been accomplished and the manuscript has been sent to a publisher (Wolters Kluwer).
The manuscript consists of chapters on public participation and its importance, on definitions, drivers and limits of participatory budgeting, and on international experience with this democratic innovation. Since the book is going to be published in Slovak language, the authors paid special attention to the experience with this innovation in the Czech Republic and Slovakia.
 
Daniel Klimovský
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Daniel Klimovský became a winner of the 2021 Alena Brunovska Award for Teaching Excellence in Public Administration.
Besides his teaching excellence and leadership in pedagogy, the NISPAcee Steering Committee also highly appreciated his commitment to the NISPAcee activities (e.g., he is one of the coordinators of the NISPAcee Working Group 1: Local Government, and he actively participated in several research- or practice-oriented projects coordinated by the NISPAcee) and his extraordinary contributions to the practice of public administration as well as applied research (e.g., as a researcher he is highly experienced in collaboration with various governments or other public authorities or international organizations).
The Alena Brunovska Award for Teaching Excellence in Public Administration is the memory award, created in recognition of Alena Brunovska´s work. A purpose of this Award is to tribute to professor Brunovska’s commitment to the development of public administration education in the region of Central and Eastern Europe and to promote the lecturers and their outcomes that continue Brunovska’s legacy. The call for the Award is usually published annually for the calendar year; however, the NISPAcee Steering Committee as the selection body has a discretion not to award the nominee every year in order to acknowledge the best practices only.
The Alena Brunovska Award for Teaching Excellence in Public Administration: https://www.nispa.org/page.php?sid=2254
 
Daniel Klimovský
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The Faculty of Social Sciences of the University of Ss. Cyril and Methodius in Trnava, Slovakia organized an international PhD conference entitled "Social Sciences from the Perspective of the Young Scientists VI.: Challenges of Demographic Crisis". The conference was organized in a hybrid form on October 28, 2021.
Within the schedule of this conference, our project event was organized, too. It was one of the conference sections, namely Section 3: "Responses of Public Planning and Budgeting to the Current Demographic Crisis". In total, six PhD students/candidates participated in the section and they presented interesting findings and results of their research activities. One of them was Mr. Jozef Gašparík, a member of our research team:
Paper: Účasť verejnosti na verejných rozpočtoch v Čechách a na Slovensku (Public Participation in Participatory Budgets in Czechia and Slovakia)
Author: Mr. Jozef Gašparík
The section was co-chaired by Ms. Andrea Čajková. In addition, Mr. Daniel Klimovský also actively participated in the section. He commented on the contents of some of the presented papers.
 
Daniel Klimovský
added an update
Thanks to research activities in the field of participatory budgeting we have already begun collaboration with a few researchers who are involved in the EmPaci project ("Empowering Participatory Budgeting in the Baltic Sea Region"). Since a majority of the Baltic Sea Region areas is characterized by largely fragmented living areas of their inhabitants, it leads to challenges for public authorities and councils when it comes to involving all citizens into joint projects and to discuss relevant issues with all citizen groups.The objective of the EmPaci project is to get more municipalities involved and mobilise different types of citizens via building municipal capacities, transnational clusters and cooperation among municipalities and their citizens. The project aims to foster civic acceptance and to build social ties within municipalities, spread the idea of participatory budgeting and the project’s piloted good practices within the Baltic Sea Region.
Martina Balážová, as a representative of our project, participated in a PB-base online network meeting entitled "Participatory budgeting at schools: trends and challenges" on October 27, 2021. The event was hosted by EmPaci project partner leader Mr. Jaroslav Dvorak (Klaipeda University, Lithuania) online on Zoom. The aim of this meeting was to share information and experiences regarding the implementation of participatory budgeting amongst participants in different local settings. Presentations and discussions were focused on participatory budgeting experiences in schools.
 
Daniel Klimovský
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Daniel Klimovský and Martina Balážová took part in a conference entitled "8th Danube Participation Day: Digitalisation & Participation: Putting people at the centre of the digital transition" on October 25, 2021. The Danube Civil Society Forum organized it as a virtual event. The conference addressed participatory decision making and co-design of public services in view of digitalisation and eGovernment.
Daniel Klimovský was invited to participate in one of the parallel panels of the conference, namely panel on co-designing policies (chaired by Claudia Singer from the EUSDR Priority Area Coordination 10/City of Vienna). He presented both selected research findings in the field of participatory budgeting and some project activities for/with practitioners.
Martina Balážová participated in the World café sessions where participants discussed two questions: 1) "What helps public authorities to implement successful/meaningful co-designing processes?", and 2) "What helps citizens and businesses to engage in co-designing processes?". She presented recent project activities focused on the Slovak charter of good participatory budgeting and also those participatory budgeting initiatives that clearly support inclusion and empowerment of the youth.
 
Daniel Klimovský
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A project event was organized within the schedule of the 29th NISPAcee Annual Conference from October 22 to 23, 2021. It had a nature of joint session and its main goal was to facilitate more intensive research relations between researchers from two NISPAcee working groups, namely the WG1 on Local Government and the WG5 on Public Finance and Public Financial Management, in the field of participatory budgeting.
Several researchers from both working groups had conducted their research in this field in recent years, and therefore it had been no surprise the call for papers had attracted numerous contributors. The initiators of the joint session entitled "Participatory Budgeting in Central and Eastern Europe: A Useful Tool or Trend?", Daniel Klimovský and Juraj Nemec, had evaluated delivered paper proposals and they had invited authors of eleven proposals to register for the session and present their papers. Due to the anti-pandemic restrictions, the main organizers of the 29th NISPAcee Annual Conference (NISPAcee and the Faculty of Public Administration, University of Ljubljana), had decided to organize the event in a hybrid form. It had necessarily influenced the joint session too.
The session was organized in three parts; the first two parts were organized physically, but the last one was organized in a virtual way. On October 22, 2021, the physical parts of the joint session were held in Ljubljana, Slovenia. In total, nine papers were presented during these parts:
Iwona Sobis (University of Gothenburg) & Michiel de Vries (Radboud University Nijmegen): "Regulation of local public participation: A review of recent studies in EU-member states"
Elżbieta Szulc-Wałecka (Marie Curie-Sklodowska University in Lublin): "Citizen participation and engagement in participatory governance - Perspective of Polish local officials in selected municipalities of the Lubelskie Region"
Katarzyna Radzik-Maruszak (Maria Curie-Sklodowska University in Lublin) & Pauliina Lehtonen (Tampere University): "Inclusion as ownership in local participatory budgeting: PB facilitators’ interpretation on the agency of children and young people"
Natalia Cuglesan (Babes-Bolyai University in Cluj-Napoca): "Local governance and participatory democracy: Experiments of digital participatory budgeting in Romania"
Nejc Brezovar (University of Ljubljana): "Implementing participatory budget at municipal level and Covid-19 impact - experience from Slovenia"
Jaroslav Dvorak & Gabriele Burbulyte-Tsiskarishvili (both from Klaipeda University): "Lessons learnt from evidence-based participatory budgeting in Lithuania: Case of EmPaci Project"
Péter Klotz (University of Public Service in Budapest): "A New Role Model for Local Governments? Budget Transparency and Participatory Budgeting of Budapest"
Maja Klun & Jože Benčina (both from University of Ljubljana): "Determinants of participatory budgeting in Slovenian municipalities"
Besides these presentations, two members of our research team also presented some of our findings during one of the physical parts of the joint session:
Paper: The first decade of participatory budgeting in Slovakia: Drivers, Models, and Impacts
Authors: Mr. Daniel Klimovský & Mr. Jozef Gašparík
On October 23, 2021 the joint session continued as a virtual event. Two additional papers were presented during this part:
Ioana Maria Costea & Despina-Martha Ilucă (both from Alexandru Ioan Cuza University in Iași): "The obligation to be silent - citizen intervention in budgetary procedures"
Martina Eckardt (Andrássy University in Budapest) & Janina Apostolou (Hamburg University of Applied Science): "Participatory budgeting in Germany: Increasing transparency in times of fiscal stress"
The contents of the joint session attracted proper attention. Vibrant discussions followed all presented papers and the participants indicated interest in further collaboration.
 
Daniel Klimovský
added an update
Several members of the research team contributed to the 29th NISPAcee Annual Conference that was held in Ljubljana, Slovenia. The conference was organized in a hybrid form from October 20 to 23, 2021, and the organizers facilitated both physical and virtual participation. Four members of the research team submitted two papers in the Working Group 5 on Public Finance and Public Financial Management:
Paper: Performance based budgeting as a part of strategic management in the local governments of the Slovak Republic
Authors: Ms. Andrea Čajková & Ms. Ivana Butoracová-Šindleryová
Paper: Smart cities as an effective tool for the internal organization of cities and the urban environment in the context of the impact of PBB on regional development
Authors: Mr. Peter Čajka & Ms. Lucia Rýsová
In addition, Mr. Juraj Nemec delivered a keynote entitled "Participatory budgeting in CEE: current trends" during a plenary session of the conference. He presented crucial findings of a joint research initiative that led to a collective volume published by Palgrave Macmillan and entitled "International Trends in Participatory Budgeting". The volume was co-edited by him and two other internationally well-known scholars, namely Mr. Michiel de Vries (Netherlands) and Mr. David Špaček (Czech Republic), and its contents include chapters focused on adoption and use of participatory budgeting in the Central and Eastern European region as well as in a few Western European countries.
Both Mr. Juraj Nemec and Mr. Daniel Klimovský co-chaired their working groups during the conference: Juraj Nemec was a co-chair of the Working Group 5 on Public Finance and Public Financial Management, and Daniel Klimovský was a co-chair of the Working Group 1 on Local Government. Last but not least, Ms. Martina Balážová was involved in the organizing committee of this NISPAcee conference.
 
Daniel Klimovský
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Martina Balážová presented research conducted by four members of our research team on the conference „Public Sector Economics 2021– Does fiscal openness pay off? The political and socio-economic effects of transparency, participation, and accountability“ that was held in Zagreb, Croatia on October 22, 2021 – performed online due to current pandemic measures.
Paper: Local Budgetary Innovations and Effects of Their Use at the Same Time
Authors: Ms. Martina Balážová, Mr. Daniel Klimovský, Ms. Mária Murray Svidroňová, Mr. Juraj Nemec
The research was oriented to the case study of Slovakia where a programme performance-based budgeting was introduced as a compulsory budgetary innovation for all larger local governments several years ago. In addition, dozens of them have already experienced participatory budgeting. The paper was dedicated to a question of how participatory budgeting could be integrated within the programme performance-based budgeting, and what effects it could bring.
 
Daniel Klimovský
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Four members of our research team presented some findings and preliminary results of this research project during an international conference entitled "Publicy 2021: 20 rokov regionálnej samosprávy" ("Publicy 2021: 20 Years of Regional Self-Government"). The conference was organized by the Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Ss. Cyril and Methodius in Trnava, Slovakia as a virtual event on October 14, 2021.
Paper: 20 rokov strategického plánovania na úrovni regionálnej samosprávy v SR (20 Years of Strategic Planning at the Level of Regional Self-Government in the Slovak Republic)
Authors: Ms. Ivana Butoracová-Šindleryová & Mr. Michal Garaj
Paper: Participatory budgeting - innovative approach to regional policymaking
Author: Ms. Martina Balážová
Paper: Brnenský participatívny rozpočet z pohľadu teoretických východísk (Brno Participatory Budgeting in Terms of Theoretical Concepts)
Author: Mr. Jozef Gašparík
Paper: Spoločné obecné úrady ako alternatíva k zlučovaniu obcí na Slovensku (Joint Municipal Offices as an Alternative to Amalgamation of the Municipalities in Slovakia)
Author: Matúš Novák
Two participants (namely Jozef Gašparík and Martina Balážová) presented some preliminary results of their research in the field of participatory budgeting, Matúš Novák focused on benefits of collaborative delivery of local tasks in terms of its efficiency and effectiveness, and Ivana Butoracová-Šindleryová together with her colleague analyzed strategic documents that are important in terms of budgeting because they include relevant performance indicators.
Besides these project-based contributions, Ms. Andrea Čajková, chaired one of the scheduled sessions of this conference, and Mr. Daniel Klimovský delivered his keynote entitled "Dvadsať rokov regionálnej samosprávy na Slovensku z perspektívy multiúrovňového vládnutia" ("Twenty Years of Regional Self-Government in Slovakia: Multi-Level Governance Perspective") during the plenary session of the event.
 
Daniel Klimovský
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Daniel Klimovský took part in a seminar entitled "Knowledge Management Responses of Public Authorities to the COVID-19 Pandemic: Central European Experience" on October 14, 2021. The seminar was held in Pardubice, Czech Republic, and its main organizer was the Faculty of Economics and Administration, University of Pardubice.
This seminar was one of the planned public events of a small research network that includes researchers from Austria, Slovakia and the Czech Republic. The network was established in December 2020 and since then it has focused its activities on challenges of the rapid adoption of knowledge management solutions during the COVID-19 pandemic crisis, and outcomes of existing or newly adopted knowledge management measures. On this matter, some cases and examples linked to public budgeting under the pandemic circumstances were presented during the seminar.
 
Daniel Klimovský
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Daniel Klimovský delivered a series of lectures at the Department of Political Science, Faculty of Arts, Jan Evangelista Purkyně University in Ústí nad Labem from October 12 to 13, 2021. The series was entitled "Local Governments in Europe", and one of the delivered lectures ("Local Policy Making in Europe: A Room for Innovations") was based on some results and findings of this research project, too.
The mentioned lecture consisted of three parts, and the lecturer introduced innovations in three different fields. He pointed out innovations that support 1) efficiency as well as effectiveness of public service delivery, 2) openness as well as transparency by means of public participation, and 3) empowerment of some vulnerable groups and their inclusion into local decision making processes.
 
Daniel Klimovský
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The Government of the Slovak Republic declared several ambitious reform intentions in its own programme statement in the beginning of 2020. Inter alia, the government pledged to implement public administration reform with special focus on sub-national governments. The COVID-19 pandemic has unprecedentedly influenced the mentioned ambitions and many reform efforts have become of secondary importance in comparison with the necessity to protect the health of the inhabitants as well as visitors of Slovakia since the beginning of the pandemic. However, the government has not given up and it seems it has found sufficient capacity to start some reform processes at least, including public administration reform.
Two members of the research team, namely Mr. Tomáš Černěnko and Mr. Daniel Klimovský, became members of the Commission for Public Administration Reform (they were appointed by the Minister of Interior of the Slovak Republic a few weeks ago).
Although an unofficial meeting of this Commission had already been held in September 2021, its very first official meeting was held on October 6, 2021. Mr. Ján Lazar, who is the State Secretary at the Ministry of Interior of the Slovak Republic, chaired the meeting and participants discussed priorities and possible scenarios of public administration reform in Slovakia. The reform should tackle not only powers and tasks of the sub-national governments in Slovakia but also horizontal as well as vertical inter-governmental relations, including financial and budgetary relations.
 
Daniel Klimovský
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The 29th NISPAcee Annual Conference entitled "Citizens' Engagement and Empowerment - The Era of Collaborative Innovation in Governance" will be held in Ljubljana, Slovenia (October 21-23, 2021) as a physical conference with a limited number of online presentations. Main organizer of the event is the Network of Institutes and Schools of Public Administration in Central and Eastern Europe (NISPAcee) and this annual conference will be co-organized by a local organizer, namely the Faculty of Public Administration, University of Ljubljana.
Programme of the event will include a joint session entitled "Participatory Budgeting in Central and Eastern Europe: A Useful Tool or Trend?". Mr. Daniel Klimovský and Mr. Juraj Nemec, two members of this research project who are also coordinators of two NISPAcee working groups, initiated this session as one of the events of this research project. A main goal of the joint session is to facilitate a meaningful and useful sharing of knowledge linked to the phenomenon of participatory budgeting among scholars from various European countries and the CEE region in particular.
Joint session of the NISPAcee WG1 and WG5: https://www.nispa.org/conference2021.php?cid=29&sid=2320
 
Daniel Klimovský
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One member of the working group on gender sensitive budgeting of our research team, Tomáš Černěnko, took part in the 14th International Conference entitled "Veřejná ekonomika a správa 2021"/"Public Economics and Administration 2021" on September 8, 2021 in Ostrava, Czech Republic. The conference was organized by the VSB - Technical University of Ostrava, Faculty of Economics and its main theme was the following: "Theoretical and Practical Issues of Public Economics and Public Administration".
Paper: Gender and Expenditure Structure of Slovak Local Governments
Author: Mr. Tomáš Černěnko
Tomáš Černěnko focused on expenditures of the local governments in Slovakia from a gender point of view. His contribution should be considered very important because research focused on gender issues in Slovakia is significantly lagging behind Western European research nowadays.
 
Daniel Klimovský
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Ms. Martina Balážová participated in a PhD Training Summer School entitled "Local government in motion: Local innovation in changing contexts". The event was held in Chania, Greece from September 13 to 16, 2021, and it was organized by the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Greece and the Technical University of Darmstadt, Germany in cooperation with the European Urban Research Association (EURA), the Standing Group on Local Government and Politics of the European Consortium for Political Research (ECPR), and the International Centre for Black Sea Studies (ICBSS). Programme of the school was aimed at PhD students who want to answer the question of why various innovations have been achieved in certain cities (and not in others).
Several established scholars delivered their key notes during the programme of the event. Besides key notes of Prof. Nikolaos Hlepas and Prof. Björn Egner, who also were the course directors, the students enjoyed the key notes delivered by Prof. Bas Denters, Prof. Hubert Heinelt, Prof. Sybille Münch, Prof. Filipe Teles, and Prof. Georgios Terizakis. Twelve participating students represented universities from several European countries (Belgium, France, Germany, Greece, Poland, Slovakia, and the UK) and presented the design and (preliminary) results of their own research projects during the individual sessions of the school programme.
Martina Balážová introduced her research project entitled "Let's empower youth to be the force of innovation: Participatory budgeting in local governments". She presented the case study of Kutná Hora (a small town located in the Czech Republic), where the youth segment was included in the budgetary processes. More precisely, in Kutná Hora not only students of high schools but also pupils of primary schools (with organizational assistance from student/pupil councils) were participating in re-distribution of certain public resources by means of participatory budgeting. Thus, putting youth in the position of the actor when it comes to a specific budgetary innovation offered a specific opportunity to take part in important decision making even for citizens, who did not reach the legal age to participate in local elections.
Thanks to her participation, Martina Balážová collected several important pieces of advice and suggestions linked to her research from relevant scholars, and interesting remarks as well as inspiration from other participants. We are sure they will help her to improve her own research activities and to contribute in a proper way to this research project.
 
Daniel Klimovský
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Daniel Klimovský took part in the meeting of the Group of Independent Experts on the European Charter of Local Self-Government on September 16-17, 2021. The meeting was held in a hybrid format (several experts participated in person but majority of invited experts took part in the meeting via platform KUDO). The participating experts addressed, for instance, the environment and human rights, smart cities, the situation of independent candidates and opposition in local and regional elections, digital transformation, etc.
From the perspective of this research project it is important that deliberative democracy at local and regional levels was one of the discussed topics. Inter alia, it was stressed that citizens deserve opportunities to be actively involved in decision making, and therefore local as well as regional governments should find ways to offer its citizens such opportunities. Within this context it is possible to see the potential of participatory budgeting, too; this budgetary innovation can be used by local or regional governments which want to involve their citizens in the decision making processes linked to allocation and distribution of public resources.
 
Daniel Klimovský
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The Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Ss. Cyril and Methodius in Trnava, Slovakia will organize an international conference for PhD students and young researchers entitled "Sociálne vedy z perspektívy mladých vedeckých pracovníkov VI" ("Social Sciences from Perspective of Young Researchers VI"). General topic of the conference is the following: "Present Challenges of Demographic Crisis". It will be the sixth year of this conference and it will be held in Trnava, Slovakia on October 28, 2021.
"Reakcie verejného plánovania a rozpočtovania na demografickú krízu v súčasnosti" ("Reactions of Public Planning and Budgeting on Present Demographic Crisis") is a title of one of the scheduled sections of the conference programme. This section belongs to the events of this research project (financially supported by the Slovak Research and Development Agency by means of the grant no. APVV-19-0108).
 
Daniel Klimovský
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The ninth virtual meeting of the working group on further diffusion of participatory budgeting in Slovakia was held on September 7, 2021. Several members of the working group took part in the meeting, and they addressed a few of the fundamental principles of good participatory budgeting; they should be included into a Slovak charter of good participatory budgeting.
While the previous meeting of the working group was focused on consistent planning, openness, inclusiveness, and deliberation, the participants discussed motivation and empowerment, creativity and flexibility, education, transformation, credibility, and sustainability during this meeting.
 
Jakub Bardovič
added a research item
Citizens' participation in public affairs is an essential element for the functioning of any democratic society. Recent years have created the conditions for forming new tools of participation or a particular transformation of existing ones. An example of this trend is participatory budgeting. In the Slovak Republic conditions, it is first used at the level of municipal self-government in 2011. The paper aims to characterize the current state of participation of inhabitants in regional cities concerning the participatory budgeting. The participation of inhabitants is monitored through the number of submitted projects and the number of voters. All years in which the participatory budget was implemented in a particular city are taken into account. The condition for including these years is their public availability, which also monitors the extent to which local governments communicate openly and honestly. Therefore, the official websites and documents of the monitored municipalities serve as a source of data. The obtained data are then compared diachronically at each town's level concerning the established comparison criteria. The findings showed that participatory budgeting is used in 4 out of 8 regional cities. Each of them has several specifics in its settings. As one of the common and main issue of all 4 cities is considered the participation of the inhabitants in the voting, which is relatively low at the moment.
Daniel Klimovský
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Jozef Gašparík, a PhD candidate and one of the members of our research team, successfully completed his research stay at the Faculty of Economics and Administration, Masaryk University in Brno, Czech Republic. His stay was supported by means of a freemover grant (CEEPUS mobility). This support allowed him to spend recent seven months (1 February - 31 August 2021) in Brno where he observed the processes of participatory budgeting at the city level in particular. He was also invited to collaborate with the Office of Participation, Department for Strategic Development and Cooperation of the City of Brno. Thanks to this collaboration he collected important quantitative as well as qualitative data.
Besides these activities, he had an opportunity to analyze and propose improvements (or innovations) of some e-tools for communication of the city towards its citizens. Last but not least, he conducted several interviews with a few representatives of the city government and some employees of the city administration.
 
Daniel Klimovský
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The eight virtual meeting of the working group on further diffusion of participatory budgeting in Slovakia was held on August 18, 2021. Although only a few members of this group took part in the meeting, their contributions to discussion had important value.
Thanks to several activities completed after the recent project conference ("Participatívne rozpočtovanie: užitočný nástroj alebo módny hit?"/"Participatory Budgeting: A Useful Tool or Just a Fad?"), a set of fundamental principles of good participatory budgeting has already been suggested. The participants of this meeting focused on four of them (namely consistent planning, openness, inclusiveness, and deliberation). They especially addressed both their importance, contents and relations to the other suggested principles. Each of these principles should be involved into a Slovak charter of fundamental principles of good participatory budgeting.
 
Daniel Klimovský
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Denník N (blog): Bratislavský participatívny rozpočet sa môže inšpirovať kúsok za hranicami
Jozef Gašparík, one of the PhD students who are involved in this research project, wrote a short article and published it in a blog section of “Denník N” – i.e. in one of the most popular Slovak dailies. The article contains his experience with a recent stay in the Office of Participation of the City of Brno, Czech Republic. He explains that Brno offers important experience with adoption of various tools of public participation, and it can be considered an interesting case also from the perspective of Bratislava if its representatives want to adopt participatory budgeting.
 
Daniel Klimovský
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The contents of the project conference entitled "Participatívne rozpočtovanie: užitočný nástroj alebo módny hit?" ("Participatory Budgeting: A Useful Tool or Just a Fad?") that was held on 24-25 June 2021 attracted attention of both scholars and practitioners. To support this attention, the organizers of the event (i.e., Faculty of Arts of the Comenius University in Bratislava, and the Office of the Slovak Government´s Plenipotentiary for Civil Society Development) as well as other project partners (e.g., Office of Trnava Self-Governing Region, Participation Factory) published a few brief reports on the conference in recent weeks.
 
Daniel Klimovský
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Several members of the working group on further diffusion of participatory budgeting in Slovakia met on July 14, 2021. It has been the seventh virtual meeting of this working group since its establishment in December 2020.
In the beginning of the meeting, the participating members addressed the usefulness of in-depth evaluation focused on some initiatives of participatory budgeting. Discussion led to a preliminary proposal. According to this proposal, the initiatives in Trnava and Banská Bystrica could be evaluated. If it is approved, several members of this research project will be involved in an evaluation group. In addition, the evaluation group will try to provide evaluative evidence to help the representatives of participatory budgeting initiatives in both above-mentioned cities to improve their activities.
In the second part of the discussion, the participating members returned back to the contents of the project conference that was held on June 24-25, 2021. Alexandra Hrabinová introduced a set of principles which had been identified during the conference. Afterwards, the participating members of the working group discussed these principles as well as their importance. The identified principles should be used as a basis for a Slovak charter of fundamental principles of participatory budgeting. The participating members also addressed the next steps. They agreed that the members of the working group on further diffusion of participatory budgeting in Slovakia should prepare a feedback. It should be discussed during the next meeting of the working group, i.e. in August 2021. Later, commenting on this set of principles should be open for other stakeholders, too. A declaration of the charter is expected in autumn 2021.
 
Daniel Klimovský
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A special issue (Issue 1, Volume 29, 2021) entitled "Public Policies and Responses of Various Policy Actors during the COVID-19 Pandemic in 2020: Experience and preliminary lessons from the Czech Republic and Slovakia" was recently published in the SciPap Journal (Scientific Papers of the University of Pardubice, Series D: Faculty of Economics and Administration). A call for papers was initiated by two members of the research team, namely Daniel Klimovský and Juraj Nemec. Together with Geert Bouckaert, they also became guest editors of this special issue:
The University of Pardubice, Faculty of Economics and Administration, as the publisher of this journal, has promoted main results of this special issue, including policy implications:
Fakulta ekonomicko-správní se zabývá dopady pandemie COVID 19
 
Daniel Klimovský
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Four members of the research team, namely Ms. Erika Neubauerová, Ms. Alena Zubaľová, Ms. Kristína Jančovičová-Bognárová, and Mr. Tomáš Černěnko, who focus, inter alia, on a phenomenon of sensitiveness of budgeting (e.g., gender sensitive budgeting, pro-poor budgeting) had a virtual meeting on July 6, 2021. They used MS Teams to discuss their preliminary results. In addition, they agreed on a future research agenda. Within this context, they also addressed their further steps as well as expected outcomes.
 
Daniel Klimovský
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Daniel Klimovský and Juraj Nemec, two members of the research team, took part in the 5th International Conference on Public Policy organized by the IPPA in Barcelona (5-9 July 2021).
Daniel Klimovský took part in the Panel T10P01 "Challenges of the policy process in subnational governance: Low capacity, different context, or simply just local features?" that was organized as a virtual meeting. The panel aimed to facilitate a discussion of a multi-disciplinary group of scholars on a diverse array of issues related to the study of the policy process at the subnational and local government levels. The panel was focused on the singularities of the local policy making instead of the commonalities which usually attract more academic attention. The participating scholars addressed especially governance challenges in democratic consolidation in policy processes (agenda setting, design, implementation, and/or evaluation, among others). Oliver Meza (Center for Research and Teaching in Economics in Mexico City, Mexico) and Emilio Moya (Catholic University of Temuco, Chile) chaired the panel. Several scholars from different regions of the world, including Brazil, Chile, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Poland, Spain and UK presented results of their research. In total, nine presentations were delivered, and each presentation was followed by the discussant´s notes and comments.
Paper: Determinants of Different Results Linked to Implementation of Participatory Budgeting in Slovakia
Author: Mr. Daniel Klimovský
Daniel Klimovský based his paper on the previous project papers aimed at various determinants of participatory budgeting (elaborated in cooperation with Ms. Mária Murray Svidroňová, Ms. Soňa Kukučková, Mr. Eduard Bakoš, and Mr. Jozef Gašparík), and he enriched the analysis by means of processing of additional data and a focus on the singularities linked to adoption and further use of participatory budgeting at the local level in Slovakia.
Juraj Nemec co-chaired the Panel T10P02 "The Impact of Decentralization on Governance Systems". The main objective of this panel was to provide a forum for debating the past and current assessment of the success or failure of decentralization and the future direction of decentralization reforms. Within this context, the organizers of the panel intended to initiate the debate about the value of the advice, the impacts of the implementation, and the longer-term sustainability of decentralization as a central focus of governmental system reforms. Participating scholars coming from Brazil, Cameroon, India, Spain, Philippines, Ukraine, the U.S. and the Czech Republic delivered ten presentations focused on the topics of the panel.
 
Daniel Klimovský
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The second day of the project conference ("Participatívne rozpočtovanie: užitočný nástroj alebo módny hit?"/"Participatory Budgeting: A Useful Tool or Just a Fad?") was held on June 25, 2021. While the agenda of the first conference day facilitated an international academic exchange of knowledge and experience, the agenda of the second day was dedicated to the needs and requirements of practitioners, especially local policy makers, decision makers, representatives of relevant NGOs and local activists in Slovakia.
Mr. Marián Zouhar (Dean of the Faculty of Arts, Comenius University in Bratislava) together with Mr. Martin Giertl (the Slovak Government´s Plenipotentiary for Civil Society Development) opened the second day of the conference. Their speeches were followed by a moderated discussion. Ms. Diana Šurkalová Dušeková (Public Relation Officer of the City Office of Prievidza), Mr. Miroslav Kollár (Mayor of Hlohovec), Mr. Ladislav Lörinc (Mayor of KVP - City Part of Košice) and Mr. Marek Neštický (Vice-Chair of Trnava Self-Governing Region) were discussants, and Ms. Barbara Gindlová (the Office of the Slovak Government´s Plenipotentiary for Civil Society Development) moderated the discussion.
After a short morning coffee-break, the participants of the event were divided into several working groups. Virtual participants discussed features of good participatory budgeting online. Those, who participated in the event in person, had an opportunity to take part in a focus group. The results of all these activities were presented and compared before a lunch-break.
Due to fact that the mayor of Nové mesto - City Part of Bratislava had unexpectedly cancelled his participation in the event, Mr. Daniel Klimovský discussed with Mr. Tomáš Rákos (leader of Participation Factory) on his experience with participatory budgeting in the Czech Republic in the beginning of the afternoon session. Afterwards, Mr. Ján Raclavský (head of the Organization Unit of the Office of Trnava Self-Governing Region) delivered an overview of the experience of Trnava Self-Governing Region with participatory budgeting. A video transmission was used to facilitate a discussion between Ms. Eleonóra Porubcová (director of the High School of V. B. Nedožerský in Prievidza) and Ms. Martina Balážová. The director described and promoted adoption and use of participatory budgeting in her high school, and she stressed interesting achievements in particular.
After a coffee-break, the conference programme continued. Mr. Daniel Klimovský, a principal researcher, introduced the research project itself. He stressed that besides research and academic outcomes, the research team intends to communicate its results with practitioners in order to facilitate efficient knowledge and experience transfer. Mr. Miroslav Šimkovič, who is a member of the Coordination Committee for Participatory Budgeting in Banská Bystrica, presented several e-tools suitable for communication, coordination, and voting within participatory budgeting. The conference was concluded by a presentation on further diffusion of participatory budgeting in Slovakia. Ms. Alexandra Hrabinová (the Office of the Slovak Government´s Plenipotentiary for Civil Society Development) pointed out the importance of such conferences because they can lead not only to knowledge and experience exchange between scholars coming from various countries, but also between scholars and practitioners, including policy makers as well as representatives of various stakeholders.
Last but not least all discussed points will be assessed. The organizers of the conference want to use them as a basis for a Slovak charter of fundamental principles of participatory budgeting in the near future.
 
Daniel Klimovský
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A conference entitled "Participatívne rozpočtovanie: užitočný nástroj alebo módny hit?" (Participatory Budgeting: A Useful Tool or Just a Fad?") began on June 24, 2021. Agenda of this first conference day consisted of three parts.
In the morning, the members of the research team had an internal project meeting. The meeting was organized in person, and the participating researchers discussed previous activities, achievements, and further research steps.
In the afternoon, two international sessions were held. In the first of them, Ms. Ellen Haustein from the University of Rostock (Germany), Mr. Nelson Dias from Oficina (Portugal), and Mr. David Reilly from the Scottish Government (United Kingdom) presented Western European experience with participatory budgeting. The second session was focused on Central and Eastern European experience with this budgetary innovation: Ms. Lotta-Maria Sinervo from the Tampere University (Finland) delivered a presentation on diffusion and use of participatory budgeting in the Baltic Sea Region, and Mr. Eduard Bakoš from the Masaryk University in Brno (Czech Republic) presented experience from the Czech Republic.
The first conference day was concluded by a private session of invited guests. They discussed opportunities of further collaboration in various areas, including joint publications, common project ideas, etc.
 
Daniel Klimovský
added a research item
Open Access: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/03003930.2021.1944858?src=& xxx The Czech Republic and Slovakia rank among the extremely fragmented European countries in terms of their local government structure. In addition to local governments, regional governments were established in both countries in connection with EU accession, which means that policy making is framed at three levels in both countries. If it applies that more centralised structures are, generally, easier to coordinate in crisis situations, then these two decentralised post-communist countries offer a great laboratory for examining how this unexpected pandemic crisis that has affected all socio-political and economic levels and structures has been handled in a very fragmented environment. We intend to examine the behaviour of individual levels of government, measures adopted by the governments and their expected and unexpected impacts during the first wave of a pandemic crisis with a special focus on possible changes in the systems of multi-level governance.
Daniel Klimovský
added a research item
This special issue was envisaged to cover diverse scholarly contributions of an empirical nature that focus on various questions linked to the COVID-19 crisis in the Czech Republic and Slovakia. The choice of countries was intentional; after all, the Czech Republic and Slovakia both experienced controversial developments during 2020. The COVID-19 pandemic found them unprepared and inexperienced in the field of serious epidemics yet also saw them gain international recognition for the very positive results gained from their initial responses. The second half of 2020 provided a very different story. Both countries were hard hit by the epidemics immediately after the summer, and the situation worsened month by month. These negative developments escalated at the end of 2020 and in early 2021 when the number of new cases rapidly increased and the total number of patients at risk of dying began to exceed the capacities of public hospitals. This summary offers an overview of the research by authors included in this special issue. It compares their findings with the results of others in order to suggest a set of policy implications that are based on empirical analyses. There is also an attempt to estimate several avenues of further multi-disciplinary research focusing on the COVID-19 pandemic and relevant policy responses. Within this context, this special issue is useful for both researchers and policy makers.
Daniel Klimovský
added an update
Jozef Gašparík took part in the online training and workshop "Participatívne rozpočty a samospráva" ("Participatory Budgets and Self-Government") on June 8, 2021. The event was held to inspire representatives of the local governments in Slovakia in the field of local governments´ support for civic engagement. It was offered by the Office of the Slovak Government´s Plenipotentiary for Civil Society Development within the initiative called "Na občanoch záleží" ("Citizens Matter"). Jozef Gašparík chaired an introductory discussion, and he actively contributed to other discussions.
The first part of the event was devoted to the introductory discussion on the differences between a common grant scheme and participatory budgeting. Local governments in Slovakia often use various schemes for distribution of grants or subsidies without any active involvement of their inhabitants, but they call them "participatory budgets". Therefore, discussants focused on pointing out the main differences between these tools. In addition, they tried to explain and promote the importance of the element of public participation for participatory budgeting. In the second part of the event, a few invited guests presented various examples of good practice in the field civic engagement at local level and possible support from local governments.
 
Daniel Klimovský
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Daniel Klimovský met with Michal Sedlačko (FH Campus Wien - University of Applied Sciences, Austria) and Viktor Prokop (Faculty of Economics and Administration, University of Pardubice, Czech Republic) on June 8, 2021. During this virtual meeting, they discussed further steps of comparative research focused on challenges of adoption of knowledge management solutions in the field of public budgeting during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Public budgeting belongs to those fields that were dramatically challenged by uncertain circumstances of the pandemic. Unsurprisingly, public authorities searched for innovative solutions in response to this uncertainty. Within this context, various tools of knowledge management were employed but the quality of their implementation varied a lot. Taking into account these points, it will be interesting (1) to identify those tools of knowledge management which were implemented in the first stages of the pandemic, (2) to evaluate effectiveness, efficiency, and benefits of the implemented tools, and (3) to point out those tools of knowledge management that remained in action also in the later stages of the pandemic.
 
Anežka Borošová
added a research item
The issue of equal political participation of women and men became an important international research topic only a few decades ago. Although a relatively large number of research initiatives has been devoted to the topic of insufficient political representation of women and its determinants, the effects of such unequal political representation of women remain a lagging research field especially in the post-communist countries. This fact is one of the main reasons for conducting research, the partial results of which are contained in this paper. The analytical part begins with a description of women's representation at the regional level in Slovakia. Two groups of politically active women are identified as target groups for the research purposes, namely the women who hold the position of deputies in regional councils and the women who are members of budgetary/financial committees established by these councils. Further analytical attention is paid to the perceptions of these two target groups towards possible influence of women on regional budgets. From a methodological point of view, not only methods of descriptive statistics are used, but also a content analysis of data collected by means of electronically distributed survey is employed. Several researchers concluded that there is a relatively clear relation between the women's representation in decision-making (representative) bodies and the contents of various public budgets. Therefore, it is interesting to look at this issue from perspective of those who are directly involved. Although the analysed sample is small, it has potential to stimulate further and more extensive research in this area. Key words: political representation of women, regional (self-)government, public budgeting, Slovakia
Daniel Klimovský
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The Faculty of Arts, Comenius University in Bratislava and the Office of the Slovak Government´s Plenipotentiary for Civil Society Development in cooperation with other partner universities (i.e. University of Economics in Bratislava; Matej Bel University in Banská Bystrica; University of SS. Cyril and Methodius in Trnava) are going to organize an international conference "Participatívne rozpočtovanie: užitočný nástroj alebo módny hit?" (Participatory Budgeting: A Useful Tool or Just a Fad?"). The event is going to be held in Bratislava, Slovakia on June 24-25, 2021, and it is financially supported by the Slovak Research and Development Agency by means of grant no. APVV-19-0108. EURACTIV Slovensko is a media partner of this event. The conference is going to be held under the auspices of the Dean of the Faculty of Arts, Comenius University in Bratislava, and the Plenipotentiary of the Government of the Slovak Republic for the Development of Civil Society.
A final (updated) program of the conference consists of three parts (it is attached). An internal project meeting is going to be organized in the morning time of the first day of the event. Afterwards, i.e. in the afternoon of the same day, the international part of the conference (in English) - "20 Years of Participatory Budgeting in Europe" - is going to be held (as a virtual event). The national part of the conference (in Slovak) for Slovak scholars, policy makers, politicians, local activists, etc. - "10 rokov participatívneho rozpočtovania na Slovensku" ("10 Years of Participatory Budgeting in Slovakia") - is going to be held on 25 June 2021. This part of the conference will be organized in a hybrid form.
 
Matúš Novák
added a research item
The paper deals with participatory budgeting at the level s of self-governing regions in the Slovak Republic. In the Slovak Republic, the concept of participatory budgeting is gaining more and more support, either from individual local governments or the inhabitants themselves. The aim of the paper is both to use secondary sources to provide readers with basic information about participatory budgeting and to evaluate the use of participatory budgeting as a tool of modern management methods in regional offices in Slovakia. This paper uses several research methods including synthesis, induction, deduction and also comparison. Data collection is based mainly on secondary data available on the Internet. From processing the data, we see that of the eight self-governing regions, only half (four) regions use participatory budgeting: Bratislava, Trnava, Trenčín and Žilina. The first three of these regions have been using participatory budgeting for several years, while Žilina has only had one year of experience. The conditions for the use and redistribution of funds from the participatory budget are determined and set by each region separately.
Daniel Klimovský
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"Obecné noviny" ("Municipal Newspaper"), a weekly for representatives of local governments in Slovakia, published promotional information on upcoming project activities:
- An international project conference "Participatívne rozpočtovanie: užitočný nástroj alebo módny hit?" (Participatory Budgeting: A Useful Tool or Just a Fad?"); it will be held in Bratislava, Slovakia on June 24-25, 2021.
- An online training and workshop "Participatívne rozpočty a samospráva" ("Participatory Budgets and Self-Government"); it is one of the trainings/workshops offered by the Office of the Slovak Government´s Plenipotentiary for Civil Society Development within the initiative called "Na občanoch záleží" ("Citizens matter"), it will be hell on June 8, 2021, and Jozef Gašparík, who is a member of the research team, will chair an introductory discussion.
 
Jozef Gašparík
added a research item
Participatory budgeting is relatively new phenomenon, which has been invented in Brazilian city Porto Alegre. This new tool has been spread in Slovakia just in last decade, and nowadays is part of public decision making in many regions and municipalities. Resalting from it popularisations around the world it has been subject of many researches and public institutions publications. Thanks to many researchers we determined many characteristics of participatory budgeting. This paper focuses on application of this new tool of public policy making in Slovakia in comparison to the theoretical approaches. Data analysis shows that slovak municipalities are much open to public participation than theory. There are mostly no topics or regional dividing of city. On the contrary slovak municipalities take their right in junging of citizen´s project, which is one of the determinants of participatory budgeting in theoretical approaches.
Daniel Klimovský
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Juraj Nemec took part in the 8th International Scientific-Practical Conference on Public Administration Changes: "Public Sector Activities in the Context of the Pandemic: Challenges and Trends" (Tarptautinė Mokslinė-Praktinė VIII Viešojo Valdymo Pokyčių Tarptautinė Konferencija: "Viešojo Sektoriaus Veikla Pandemijos Sąlygomis – Išššūkiai ir Tendencijos"). The conference was held as a virtual event on May 26, 2021. He delivered a presentation focused on quality of collaborative governance in Slovakia in times of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Presentation: Collaborative Governance During the COVID-19 Pandemic with Focus on the Slovak Experience
Authors: Mr. Juraj Nemec, Mr. Ivan Malý & Mr. Daniel Klimovský
The presentation was elaborated by two members of the research team, namely Juraj Nemec and Daniel Klimovský, in cooperation with Ivan Malý (Masaryk University in Brno, Czech Republic). It was presented during the plenary session of the event.
 
Daniel Klimovský
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ÚSV ROS: Kabinet participácie (Participatívne procesy v praxi: čítanka participatívnej tvorby verejných politík)
The Office of the Slovak Government´s Plenipotentiary for Civil Society Development organizes a series of discussions focused on recently published books in a field of public participation. This series is called "Kabinet participácie" ("Cabinet of Participation") and it is a virtual discussion book-club. Although discussants are usually (co-)authors of presented books, discussions are broadcasted via a YouTube channel to the general public. The audience has an opportunity to ask questions, and in certain parts of discussions the participating (co-)authors can react and try to answer those questions.
Discussion on the book titled "Participatívne procesy v praxi: čítanka participatívnej tvorby verejných politík" ("Participatory Processes in Practice: A Textbook of Participatory Policy Making") was held and broadcasted on May 27, 2021. Two members of the research team (Daniel Klimovský and Jozef Gašparík) contributed to this book by means of an introductory chapter: "Základný rámec participatívnej tvorby verejných politík a súvisiace pojmy" ("Basic Framework of Participatory Policy Making and Related Concepts"):
Besides Daniel Klimovský, who is (co-)author of several chapters as well as editor of the book, three other co-authors of this book took part in the discussion: Ms. Terézia Šabová, Mr. Tomáš Jacko, and Mr. Jakub Varíni. Daniel Klimovský played the role of moderator but in some parts of the event he also presented his own opinions or experience. In addition, he delivered a short presentation aimed at ten stereotypes that had been identified during implementation of the national project "Podpora partnerstva a dialógu pre oblasť participatívnej tvorby verejných politík" (" Promoting Partnership and Dialogue in the Field of Participatory Policy Making"). Several interesting questions from the audience were delivered via a Q&A platform called Slido during the discussion among the participating co-authors, and the discussants tried to answer these questions.
 
Daniel Klimovský
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EURACTIV.sk: Na Slovensku participatívne rozpočty cez pandémiu rušili, v Brne v ňom vidia príležitosť priblížiť sa k ľuďom
Two members of the research team, namely Jozef Gašparík and Daniel Klimovský, as well as Alexandra Hrabinová, as a representative of the Office of the Slovak Government´s Plenipotentiary for Civil Society Development, were interviewed by Michal Hudec from EURACTIV.sk. They especially focused on participatory budgeting and recent experience of local governments in Slovakia with this budgetary innovation. Besides a few general statements, important research results were mentioned and presented in these interviews, too.
 
Daniel Klimovský
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