Branka Ćurčić is a member of the association Group for Conceptual Politics from Novi Sad and a member of the Executive Board of The Association Serbian Independent Cultural Scene (NKSS). She has been active for years at the cultural, organizational and local political scene of the civil society.
What does it mean to take part in the re-distribution of public money when ways and procedures of realization of that process are part of the corruptive state mechanism usurped by parties – the mechanism that keeps disregarding the public? Branka Ćurčić will talk about practical examples (in the fields of culture and local government), as well as possibilities and policies organized people could use in order to take part in the processes of distribution of public money and democratize them.
Radmila Miković is a master of arts, specialized in management and PhD candidate at the Faculty of Organizational Sciences, business coach and a consultant with 18 years of experience in the non-profit industry of Western Balkans and EU. She provides professional support to governmental and non-governmental actors in analysis of complex contextual, organizational and management information for the purpose of creating as efficient and effective as possible development strategies, policies, programmes and projects.
The workshop will deal with the public participation in decision making at local level, particularly in budgeting process. Participants will discuss why and how the public gets involved in decision making process, what are the specificities and major challenges of taking part in budget processes.
Milena Vasić was born in 1985 in Smederevska Palanka, completed Union University Faculty of Law in Belgrade in 2009, and passed the bar exam in 2017. She currently works as a legal advisor in the Lawyers` Committee for Human Rights – YUCOM.
For seven years already she has been active in the field of human rights, both as a professional and as an activist, with the emphasis on the position of marginalized social groups, especially LGBT population and women. Apart from that, she is engaged in projects dealing with the freedom of assembly, media rights and freedoms, the state actions in emergency situations, assistance to citizens for self-representation in court, free of charge legal aid, position of refugees in Serbia and other countries.
As an associate and a researcher she took part in several research and trainings in different fields of human rights.
Subject of the lecture
The lecture will consist of two parts – theoretical and practical.
Theoretical part aims to get participants familiar with the structure of state organs in Serbia, standards of the right to information and to information of public importance, as well as the relevant legal framework in Serbia.
Practical part consists of writing a request for access to information of public importance and steps to be taken in case of potential failure of state bodies to respond as they should.
Goal is to teach participants how to request information of public importance, which institution to address and in which way to use the Law in order to put pressure onto the state institution unwilling to provide answers.
Fahrudin Kladničanin is a programme coordinator in the Academic Initiative Forum 10, a local non-governmental organization from Novi Pazar. He has been active in the work of civil society organizations for ten years and deals with human rights, especially rights of minorities.
He will discuss practical examples of researching how the money of citizens was spent at the local level.
Danilo Ćurčić, bachelor of laws (The Faculty of Law of the Belgrade University, Human Rights Centre of the Faculty of Law of the University of Essex), dealing with issues concerning Roma, access to economic and social rights, antidiscrimination and access to justice. He has worked on some of the most significant cases of forced evictions, discrimination against Roma community in container settlements in Belgrade, and social housing issues. He has also been engaged in the proceedings before the Constitutional Court related to different issues that could roughly be defined as the issues of poverty and human rights – from imposing compulsory unpaid work for the beneficiaries of financial social assistance to taxes on refugee social housing.
Fields of interest: economic and social rights, right to adequate housing, budget analysis of human rights.
Austerity Measures, Taxes and Human Rights
There`s a Secret Connection
In the three hour programme participants will learn basics of budgeting and human rights. First of all they will be given a short introduction of history of human rights, including today often totally outdated division to civil and political, economic and social rights, as well as the two different systems of interpreting these groups of rights.
Budget, as the central issue, will be considered from the two perspectives – how the state builds its budget, i.e. what kind of tax policy it implements, and how the tax payers` money is being spent. Through the discussion we will try to assess the position of human rights within these policies, and whether politicians should start listening to citizens when making economic decisions.
A part of the programme will include the discussion on austerity measures, both global and ones in Serbia, and how do they affect the most vulnerable ones. We will see whether austerity measures jeopardized the fundaments of welfare state which the Constitution guarantees, and to what extent these guarantees are feasible in Serbia today.
The last part of the program will be about participative budgeting and transparency of the work of authorities, possibilities for citizens to influence budgeting policies and examples of successful struggles in this field.
Boban Stojanović is a PhD candidate and a teaching associate at the Faculty of Political Sciences of the Belgrade University, as well as founder of the Group for Public Policy Analysis and Creation.
This session, titled “Corruption, Money and Politics”, will discuss types and prevalence of corruption, purposefulness of collecting and spending public money, role of political institutions and parties, as well as financing political activities.