IDG Project Description
Democratic Effective Municipalities Initiative (DEMI)
The Democratic Effective Municipalities Initiative (DEMI) is a three year, 19.9 million dollar project dedicated to assisting Kosovo municipalities, their leaders and citizens, to achieve good governance at the local level. DEMI will be implemented by international and local staff working in approximately 20-25 municipalities throughout Kosovo, including in all willing Serb majority municipalities.
In all partner municipalities, DEMI works closely with local officials to identify and achieve key outcomes: more effective governing, increased trust in government, improved local services, more robust local economic development, and greater involvement of citizens, especially youth, in civic affairs. Overall, DEMI undertakes steps to make local service delivery more transparent and local officials more accountable for results. Throughout the implementation of DEMI, UI will seize the opportunity to collect data on the development of democratic structures and processes in a post-conflict environment, and explore the explanations for differing progress in various parts of the new state.
The Urban Institute team, comprised of UI, the International City and County Management Association (ICMA), Crimson Capital, Training Resources Group (TRG), and PA Government Services, is implementing the program in close collaboration with Kosovo stakeholders such as the Ministry of Local Government Administration (MLGA) and the Association of Kosovo Municipalities (AKM). DEMI will engage local Kosovo organizations in its activities to the maximum extent possible to ensure sustainability of USAID's assistance efforts.
DEMI is organized around six main objectives:
1. Strengthened Serb-Majority Municipalities - Providing support to all Serb-majority municipalities in all DEMI program objectives, including work on establishing the primary functioning of the municipal administrations and assemblies, as well as establishing key services. As these municipalities gain their foothold, we will graduate them to the more advanced work on municipal administration and assembly reform, service delivery improvements, civic engagement work and local economic development as described in Objectives 2-6.
2. Strengthened Municipal Administrations - Providing support for organizational development and mentoring and coaching to strengthen the capacity of mayors, directors, and other municipal staff to govern democratically and effectively.
3. Empowered Municipal Assemblies - Assisting with skill development for debate, analysis, and communication with administration and citizens to assure assemblies are fulfilling their responsibility to set policy and issue regulations, oversee the executive body and represent the interests of their constituents.
4. Increased Civic Engagement in Municipal Governance - Assisting municipalities with a focus on increasing involvement of citizens -especially youth and women in decision-making. Working with media on covering local government issues to motivate citizen involvement and build transparency.
5. Measurably Improved Municipal Service Delivery - Working with municipalities to improve the quality and quantity of municipal services and responsiveness to citizens.
6. Local Economic Development Enhanced - Strengthening the capacities of municipalities to manage realistic local economic development policy and plans, market local investment opportunities, formalize dialogue with the local business community.