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 different cities in the Netherlands.

Key Information

  • The course dates are 21 March to 1 April 2022.
  • The deadline for applications is 11 February 2022.
  • The deadline for scholarship applications is 5 October 2021 (MSP) and 19 October 2021 (OKP). 
  • The course will take place in The Hague, Netherlands.
  • Group discounts are 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:

  • Define your own role and responsibilities in participation processes as well as the role of your partners;
  • Define the conditions necessary to facilitate an open government, including open data initiatives; 
  • Develop actions to strengthen the inclusion of excluded groups – such as women and youth – in decision-making processes; 
  • Specify conditions and do’s and don’ts for successful participation projects;
  • Identify instruments for increasing social accountability.

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 will contribute to the course:

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 the USA. Robert works independently towards cities able to offer opportunities to all its inhabitants and visitors.

Paul Suijkerbuijk is the driving force behind open data in the Netherlands. Over the last few years, he has managed to create unprecedented momentum in the Dutch open data community, convincing governments to open up and share their data and optimising the preconditions for open data to take off. Paul is the founder of, the Dutch open data portal which at the moment gives access to more than 7.000 open data sets in the Netherlands, yet this number is still increasing.

Hans Hoekman is a Senior Community Police Officer with over 20 years of experience working for the Rotterdam police force in the Netherlands. Hans is an expert, advisor and trainer in public participation processes to promote safety and security.


Lars Burema is an expert in citizen participation and inclusion with over twelve years of international work experience. He worked for five years on the participation of minority communities, both at the local and central government levels in Kosovo. For the past years, Lars has worked for The Hague Academy on these topics, delivering training in a wide variety of countries, including Albania and the Palestinian Territories.

Practical information

The course fee is € 3.595,-. This includes all training-related costs, as well as drinks, lunches, training materials and travel during the training programme. Roundtrip travel to The Hague and accommodation are not included. 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.

For questions or more information about this course, please direct your inquiry to or call +31(70) 37 38 695.

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 the deadline to apply for a scholarship to attend this course is 5 October 2021 (for the MENA Scholarship Programme) and 19 October 2021 (for the Orange Knowledge Programme). For more information regarding eligibility and application procedures, please visit our Scholarship page.

Application Deadline

The application deadline is 11 February 2022. 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 1-week after the application deadline.

Payments can be made by bank transfer or by PayPal. We offer the option of paying in one or two instalments. 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 cancelled. Please note that The Hague Academy accepts registrations on a first-pay, first-served policy.

Visa Applications

Some countries require a visa to enter the Netherlands. Please check with The Netherlands or the embassy for the visa requirements related to your country. Because of the length of time needed for the visa procedure, we advise you to start this process as soon as possible. The Hague Academy will send you an acceptance letter that will assist you in arranging your visa, but only after we confirm your payment.


Payments received before the deadline will be reimbursed. However, an administration fee of €150 will be charged to fulfil 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.