Course Introduction:

Inclusive development requires responsive governments and empowered citizens. But what can local officials and civil society organisations do to ensure all voices are heard?

In this training course, participants will discuss ways to involve citizens – especially minorities and marginalised groups – to create a culture of inclusive governance. Participants will learn how civil society can empower citizens to voice concerns and keep their governments accountable to issues affecting their community.

This training will be a true experience! In this course, you will meet the Ombudsman of The Hague and visit examples of joint policymaking and multi-stakeholder governance, such as neighbourhood projects in the city of Amsterdam or The Hague.

Course format:

Due to the travel restrictions associated with the Coronavirus outbreak, the format of the course has been adjustedWe are now offering a practice-oriented fully online course, consisting of two parts:

Part 1: This module will consist of several assignments spread throughout the timeframe provided. This is an opportunity to learn about the topic (while enhancing your online skills in an innovative e-learning environment) and prepare you for the next part of the course.
Dates: 22 March – 30 April 2021.

Part 2: The second module has a duration of one week in which we will introduce new content and organise virtual study visits and daily live sessions with experts. We expect participants’ full participation during this week. At the end of this week, participants will have two more weeks to complete the training assignments and their back home action plans. During these weeks, they can also ask outstanding questions to the course facilitators and experts, and they will receive feedback on their course work.
Dates: 7 – 25 June 2021.

Key Information

  • This training will take place online.
  • Applications and payment must be received before the start of the course.
  • Group discounts available if you participate with three or more colleagues.
  • For general inquiries, please contact or call +(31) 70 37 38 695.

Learning Objectives

This course will help you to:

  • Identify instruments for increasing social accountability;
  • Define your own role and responsibilities in participation processes as well as the role of your partners;
  • Specify conditions and do’s and don’ts for successful participation projects;
  • Work on the policy cycle;
  • Apply tools for communication with citizens, NGOs and other stakeholders.

After this course, you will receive a professional certificate of completion from The Hague Academy for Local Governance.

Intended Audience

Professionals working for a municipal, provincial or national government, a donor organisation or NGO and/or those involved in participation and accountability processes in relation to development and governance.


The following experts have contributed to the course in the past:

Robert Lautenbach is an expert in participatory urban development projects. This often involves complex projects where citizens and other stakeholders collaborate. He has extensive experience in capacity building, policy-making, strategic advice, process guidance, and hands-on project management in several countries including South Africa, Kenya, Germany, The Netherlands, and USA. Robert works independently towards cities able to offer opportunities to all its inhabitants and visitors.

Jerome Scheltens is an expert in citizen participation with over 20 years of experience in project management, training and research in the fields of governance, democracy assistance, international relations and development cooperation. “Citizen participation is an increasing demand around the globe. But standard practices are few. The essence of successfully managing citizen participation is ‘political sensitivity’. And in turn, that comes down to not promising more than you can deliver, both in content, services as well as in process roles. In other words: politics and public administration are all about expectation management.”


Practical information

The course fee is € 3.150,-. This includes all training-related costs. Group discounts are available if you participate with three or more colleagues in this course. Email us for more information. The course language is English.

Funding Opportunities

Participants in our courses are predominantly funded by their own employer (municipalities, Ministries, NGOs and training or research institutes) or by a donor or development agency. If you are looking for additional funding opportunities, there are a few organisations you could approach.

Nuffic Scholarships

The Netherlands Organisation for International Cooperation in Higher Education (Nuffic) offers scholarships for training courses in the Netherlands. These scholarships seek to develop and strengthen the skills, instincts, and abilities of professionals to enable their organisations and communities to succeed in an ever-changing world.

Please note that scholarship applications for this course have already ended. For more information regarding eligibility and application procedures, please visit our Scholarships page.

Application Deadline

Please note that the registration form and the payment must be received before the start of the course. Incomplete applications will be neither accepted nor considered in the selection process.


After submitting your completed application, you will receive a confirmation of your course registration and an invoice. The payment deadline is the start date of the course.

Payments can be made by bank transfer or by PayPal. We offer the option of paying in one or two installments. An advance payment of 50% secures the reservation of a seat to the training until the payment deadline. However, your participation in the course is guaranteed only after receipt of full payment prior to the deadline.

If no payment is received before that deadline, then your registration will automatically be canceled. Please note that The Hague Academy accepts registrations on a first-pay, first-served policy.


Payments received before the deadline will be reimbursed. However, an administration fee of €150 will be charged to fulfill this request. We strongly encourage you to start with the visa application procedure at least six weeks before the start of the training programme in order to prevent late cancellation.

A cancellation fee of 50% of the course fee will be charged for participants cancelling between four and two weeks prior to the start of the training. If you cancel your participation within the two-week period before the start of the course, then you will be required to pay 80% of the course fee.

In the event that you cannot attend the course, it is possible to nominate a suitably qualified candidate to replace you without extra charge.

The Hague Academy for Local Governance reserves the right to cancel a course if the number of participants is insufficient or due to any other unforeseen circumstances. In this case, your payment will be 100% reimbursed. Other costs such as transportation or hotel cannot be reimbursed.

Contact Information

For questions about this course and procedures, or to inquire about our tailor-made courses on citizen participation, please contact us by email at, or dial +31-70-3738695.