Participants from Albania, Ukraine, Jamaica, Indonesia and Serbia gathered in The Hague in June to take part in the first ever Local Economic Development training course of The Hague Academy for Local Governance. During six inspiring days, participants learnt not only about each other’s background and work experience but also about stakeholder analysis, pivotal project management and innovation at the local level.

Combining in-depth interactive lectures with field visits and study cases, participants acclaimed the course as an “invaluable experience” and applauded the “unique approach of theory and practice” for which the Academy is now recognized across the world.

Among the participants were the first four Talent for Governance scholars of 2010. They received a scholarship from the Talent for Governance fund after they successfully passed the application and selection procedure this Spring. Ivan Dmytrasevych and Khrystyna Kovtalo from Lviv in Ukraine, Ina Xhakoni from Durres in Albania and Zulkifli Hamid from Lhokseumawe in Aceh, Indonesia, did not only take part in the training course but also enjoyed the privilege of a one-week practice-oriented internship in Delft, Drechterland or Meppel. Reflecting on his first visit to Europe, Mr. Hamid concurred to the motto of The Hague Academy by saying that “it has been a true local governance experience. I am very thankful”.

The Hague Academy is determined to organize future courses about local development and economic management in the upcoming years. According to programme manager Suzanne Jansen, “we are developing brand new courses on local financial management, resource allocation and sustainable growth. Be first to learn about these courses by subscribing today to our newsletter or visiting our website regularly.” Later this year also the Talent for Governance programme will be continued with six new scholars arriving and the launch of the application procedure for 2011.