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Increasing Civic Engagement in the Digital Agenda – ICEDA

Implementing Partners: Metamorphosis Foundation (North Macedonia), e-Governance Academy (Estonia), CRTA – Center for Research, Transparency, and Accountability (Serbia), NGO 35mm (Montenegro), Open Data Kosovo (Kosovo) and Lëvizja Mjaft (Albania).

 

Digital Agenda for Western Balkan:

Digital Agenda is an initiative developed by the European Union, which has also been extended and adopted for 6 countries in the Western Balkan. It aims to ensure that citizens of the region can fully reap the benefits of the digital transformation. The commitment to the Digital Agenda will ensure that citizens have the skills to match the demands of the new economy and will help modernize public administrations, strengthen cyber security, increase connectivity, and improve the business climate.

 

What does it mean for the citizens?

With the implementation of Digital Agenda citizens will be developing their skills to use more governmental services available online without the need to be concerned about their privacy. Moreover, by digitizing the services, the citizens will be able to connect more and improve the climate for businesses that are currently occurring under bureaucratic procedures.

 

Where does ICEDA fit here?

There is little knowledge and information in the public about the Digital Agenda of the European Union, therefore the ICEDA project is aiming to increase the engagement of the civil society organizations (CSOs) in the promotion, shaping and implementation of the Digital Agenda in the Western Balkans.

As such, the implementing partners across three years will be working on increasing the capacities of CSOs and media for tackling challenges related to the Digital Agenda as well as promoting the Digital Agenda at the national and local levels. Moreover, currently across the region of Western Balkans, there are a lot of digital services from public institutions available for citizens. These services range from declaring taxes, online payments for utilities to registering a new business. ICEDA will increase the usage of e-services through promotion and contribution to solving issues preventing their widespread use as well as advocating for new quality services to be introduced from the authoritiess at all levels.

 

What will the ICEDA team do?

We will be working with the CSOs, media, state institutions and citizens to enhance the agenda of the Western Balkans. This will be achieved by:

  • Providing research for the current implementation of the e-government development and monitoring it through a scope of three years;
  • Providing training and capacity building opportunities for the CSOs, media, and decision-makers;
  • Creating a regional network of CSOs aiming to advocate for the Digital Agenda;
  • Awarding small grants to 30 CSOs for promoting and advancing the Digital Agenda through establishing 15 local e-gov. support centers and advocacy initiatives;
  • Supporting the citizens and the vulnerable groups in using the existing e-gov. services.

 

 By 2023 ICEDA will have:

  • Created a strong regional network of empowered CSOs and improved digital services.
  • Established 15 local e-gov. support centers run by CSO network members;
  • Achieved an increased demand for digital services and their increased utilization;
  • Enhanced the cross-sectoral cooperation between the CSOs and state institutions for inclusive citizen-centered Digital Agenda.