Between the 30th of October and the 2nd of November 2014, the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung (FES) office in Belgrade in cooperation with the Foundation Max van der Stoel (FMS) and the European Forum for Democracy and Solidarity, organized the second seminar in 2014 for young and promising politicians and members of social democratic parties from the countries of former Yugoslavia and Albania. The seminar, in which 26 participants participated, took place in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina.
After a welcome by the FES Sarajevo director Judith Illerheus, who also shed a light on the political situation in Bosnia, FMS trainers Guus Staats and Martijn Beckers introduced themselves and the agenda. Among others, theory and workshops on campaign strategy, central message and communicating the message were conducted. In addition, the seminar focused on political skills of the participants. In that regard, they were assigned to practice their debating and public speaking skills. Finally, a part of the seminar discussed the relations with media and the way online communications can be used most efficiently in political communication.
On Sunday the seminar ended with a presentation of Darko Brkan, director of non-governmental organisation ‘Why not’?, on the role of social media in the political communication. This ngo, among others, has established an online fact checking platform (‘Istinomjer’) that checks the promises and statements of politicians.
Since 2003 the Promising Politicians Course has been organized three times annually. It includes seminars on ideology, media and communications skills and EU integration. The aim of the course is to introduce young politicians to the various aspects of political leadership, governance and the dynamics and structures of party policies. In addition, the organisers aim to create a network among young and politically active persons and to improve their knowledge on the political developments of countries in the region.
The first seminar of this year’s program took place in Bečići, Montenegro (19-22 June) and discussed the ideology and policies of social democracy and other mainstream political theories. A full report on the second seminar will be published on our website on short notice.