For the detailed program please click here:
Further information can be found here
The aim is to improve and increase the quality of higher education institutions in Europe and, above all, to develop national standards in order to meet the longer-term competitiveness of the European economy. The following panelists will discuss information about best-practice examples:
(Executive Dean of the University of Salzburg Business School, Austria)
(Executive Dean of the University of Applied Sciences, Salzburg, Austria)
(Chancellor of the Paracelsus Private Medical University of Salzburg, Austria)
(Rector of the European University „KALLOS“, Dean of the Faculty of Law and Chairman of Council of European University of Brčko District, BiH)
(President Alma Mater Europaea, Maribor, Slovenia)
The Member States are called upon to invest sustainably in education, to develop an integrated approach to the improvement of educational institutions, to introduce national qualifications frameworks as key competences and to promote tailored educational results.
Developments show that start-ups are increasingly attracted to regions and that they are indispensable from the European Union’s political agenda. Irmfried Schwimann (Deputy Director General in European Commission’s Directorate General for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SME’s, Brussels, Belgium) will as keynote speaker on “Start-Ups in the Regions – the Future for the Young Generation“ demonstrate, that start-up companies are now assuming an increasingly important role across sectors and regions. The EU promotes these innovative companies so that they can thrive beyond their country borders as well as be competitive on the international market.
For this topic, the following panel representatives will discuss the extent to which start-ups in rural areas can successfully create new jobs and counteract rural depopulation. Furthermore, proven and tested practical examples will be presented and further steps for the promotion of rural start-ups in the EU will be proposed.
(Consultant for the European Semester of economic policy coordination, Representator of the European Commission in Austria)
(Director of ITG Salzburg, Austria)
(Co-Founder & Managing Director Impact Hub Belgrade, Serbia)
(CEO Vendotel, Novo Mesto, Slovenia)
(Mayor of Bialystok, Professor at the University of Bialystok, Member of the Committee of the Regions and Triple Helix Association, Poland)
(Partner of Speedinvest GmbH, Munich, Germany)
IRE Chairman Schausberger at the Demography Conference in Budapest:
The demographic development is closely related to the geographic component. While population growth has been observed in the central areas and in the large urban centers, the population figures are decreasing in remote rural areas. Young people move into the centers, the number of children decreases, the older generation remains. This serious development of the aging of rural regions is urgently needed to be tackled throughout Europe through targeted measures, IRE Chairman Franz Schausbergerexplained at the EPP Conference of the Committee of the Regions in Budapest on September 8, 2017.
The emigration from rural areas is increasingly being driven by women, as they do not have enough jobs and too little childcare centers are available. Also the supply of fast Internet connections, which are absolutely essential for home workplaces, leaves much to be desired. Additionally, there are unsatisfactory transport and infrastructure connections which are necessary, for example, that children can access higher education institutions in central locations.
State Secretary Takacs Szabolcs Ferenc and IRE Chairman Franz Schausberger
Schausberger referred to the exemplary master plan of the Austrian Minister for Agriculture, Rupprechter, to strengthen the rural regions and the emigration as well as called for greater attention to the emptying of the remote regions in EU regional policy.
Immigration from rural regions to the urban centers, on the other hand, brings great problems, since they have too few apartments available, urban transport increases and education is additionally burdened, Schausberger explained. In the future, the regions would have to be given greater capacity to deal with the problem of emigration. This means, that the decentralization of competences and finances would be absolutely necessary, and that any kind of centralization only exacerbates the problem.
President of the Hungarian Parliament Köver Laszlo with Franz Schausberger
In addition to the conference, Schausberger met separately with the Hungarian Secretary of State for European Integration, Takacs Szabolcs Ferenc as well as with the President of the Hungarian Parliament, Köver Laszlo, on euro-political issues.
New government of Kosovo:
On Saturday, September 9, 2017, the new Prime Minister of Kosovo, Ramush Haradinaj, presented his government to the Parliament. The government is based on a coalition of AAK, AKR, PDK, Nisma and the Serb List (10 members of the Serbian minority). It has the narrow majority of 62 of the 120 seats in the Parliament of Kosovo. The opposition from the LDK (Democratic League of Kosovo) and the radical nationalist Vetëvendosje (self-determination) had left the parliament before the vote.
The new Prime Minister, Haradinaj, had held this function from December 2004 to March 2005 for several months, but resigned because he was accused by the UN War Crimes Tribunal. The trial ended with an acquittal. At the beginning of 2017 he was temporarily arrested in France on the basis of a Serbian arrest warrant.
On 7th of September 2017 Kadri Veseli, head of the Democratic Party of Kosovo (PDK), was elected President of the Kosovo Parliament by a narrow majority of 62 of the 120 delegates.
The new government’s priorities include:
- Economic development of Kosovo
- Health Care improvement
- New jobs
- Foreign investment
- NATO accession
- EU approach
- Continuation of the normalization dialogue with Serbia
- Resolution of the open border questions with Montenegro
Prime Minister: Ramush Haradinaj (Alliance for the Future of Kosovo, AAK)
First Deputy Prime Minister: Behgjet Pacolli (New Kosovo Alliance, AKR)
Deputy Prime Minister: Enver Hoxhaj (PDK)
Deputy Prime Minister: Fatmir Limaj (“Initiative“/Nisma)
Deputy Prime Minister: Dardan Gashi (AKR)
Deputy Prime Minister: Dalibor Jevtic (Serb List)
Minister of Foreign Affairs: Bahgjet Pacolli (AKR)
Ministry of Internal Affairs: Flamur Sefaj (AKR)
Minister of European Integration: Dhurata Hoxha (Democratic Party of Kosovo, PDK)
Minister of Finances: Bedri Hamza (PDK)
Minister of Justice: Abelard Tahiri (PDK)
Minister of Kosovo Security Force: Rrustem Berish (AAK)
Minister of Infrastructure: Pal Lekaj (AAK)
Minister of Health: Uran Ismaili (PDK)
Minister of Culture and Sports: Kujtim Gashi (PDK)
Ministry of Innovation and Enterprise: Besim Beqaj (PDK)
Minister of Education: Shyqyri Bytyqi (Nisma)
Ministry of Environment and Spatial Planning: Albena Reshitaj (AKR)
Minister of Diaspora: Dardan Gashi (AKR)
Minister of Agriculture: Nenad Rikado (Serb List)
Ministry of Local Government Administration: Ivan Teodosijevic (Serb List)
Minister of Rural Development: Rasim Demiri (Coalition Vakat, KV)
Source: https://www.evropaelire.org/a/28726123.html, http://infokusi.com/thaci-ramush-haradinaj-kryeministri-ri-kosoves/, http://derstandard.at/2000063758890/Kosovarisches-Parlament-hat-wieder-einen-Praesidenten and http://derstandard.at/2000063840277/Haradinaj-stellt-Kosovos-Parlament-seine-Regierung-vor
The forecasts and scenarios made in recent decades have in some cases greatly underestimated the potentials of the first generation of renewable energies. Now we have to go into the Next Generation of renewable energies, concentrating on decentralized and autonomous energy supply.
Monika Weber-Fahr (Chief Operating Officer, SustainableEnergyForAll, Austria) will address these specific aspects of renewable energy supply as the introductory speakerof the panel discussion “The Next Generation of Renewable Energy“. Through alternative sources of energy, we do not only ensure a sustainable future for generations, but also achieve considerable economic importance; however, there is still room to expand its market share.
In order to adopt these energy strategies, the following persons from industry and politics will discuss this topic in the panel discussion:
(Head of Group Sustainability Office, Erste Group Bank AG, Vienna, Austria)
(Vice president at Confindustria Bulgaria, CEDEC – European Federation of Local Energy Companies, Alliance of the Producers of Ecological Energy, Sofia, Bulgaria)
(Head of Department Strategy, Corporate Development and Innovation, VERBUND AG, Vienna, Austria)
(Managing Director Environment Agency Austria, Vienna, Austria)
(Councillor for Energy, Land Salzburg, Austria)
Local government debt in Serbia: Novi Sad most stable, Kragujevac at brink of bankruptcy
Cities and local governments in Serbia owe the state roughly one billion Euros and are more than 300 million behind in paying matured obligations. The responsibility for the poor state of public finances lies with the local governments; however, the central government has intensified this problem. In 2011, a law was passed which distributes 40 billion dinars from the state budget to local governments, which led to difficulties of the state finances.
The latest report by the Fiscal Council, underscores that the financial problems of cities and local governments jeopardize the public finances of the state and hinder economic growth. The analysis shows, that because too much is spent on subsidies and too little on capital expenditure.
The Fiscal Council thoroughly analyzed the budgets of the four largest cities in Serbia: The capital city Belgrade has balanced household income and expenditure and pays its debts on time. Only a prerequisite to the financial problems would help to solve the massive public transport problems. The capital of the Autonomous Province of Vojvodina, Novi Sad, has more stable finances than Belgrade but lacks the money for investment. The city currently has a credible and fairly balanced budget and is paying its obligations on time. The city of Nis is in serious fiscal trouble, but can still get out of it if it is changing its method of managing public finances. Kragujevac is by far in the worst fiscal position, with debts at the end of 2015 that nearly equaled the annual budget.
If the Serbian government does not take the necessary steps, the debts of local governments, which currently reach 4 percent of GDP, will force public finances into massive problems, according to the Fiscal Council.
Source: http://www.euractiv.rs/ and http://novisad.travel/de/
The President of the Republic of Kosovo, Hashim Thaçi, has decided to schedule the elections for the local self-government bodies on 22nd of October 2017.
According to the President, setting the date for the local elections is within the statutory deadlines, because the recent local elections were held in November 2013 and the final election results were not certified until December 2013.
Kosovo dissolved in 2008 from the Serbian Republic and declared its independence. Meanwhile, the majority, 23 of the 28 EU Member States, recognize the Republic of Kosovo. Kosovo is the only Balkan state yet to submit an application for EU membership. The IRE will report on the political developments of this year’s local election on the western Balkan Peninsula.
Around 1.7 million voters were able to vote in the 34 municipalities in 2013, whereby the following persons were elected to the mayor’s office:
You can find more information about the final election results 2013 here
Source: www.europeanwesternbalkans.com, www.derstandard.de/international/kosovo andwww.kas.de/kosovo/de/publications/35945/
The Austrian Federal Minister for Agriculture, Forestry, Environment and Water Management, Andrä Rupprechter, will be the highly topical representative of the IRE panel discussion “How to keep Rural Areas attractive for Future Generations”, who will, among other things, refer on the Masterplan for rural areas. “We need more equal opportunities for regions, we want more future perspectives for people living in rural areas” according to the minister, who takes position on this issue in Austria’s largest participation process in rural areas.
Furthermore, emigration, especially of young people, into the large urban centers of Europe is an acute problem in many countries. This leads to the emptying of the rural regions and to serious problems in the larger cities. Concrete measures must be created to guarantee a sustainable and, above all, a healthy future for future generations.
Introductory keynotes on this utterly important topic are held by Elisabeth Köstinger (Member of the European Parliament, President of the Eco-Social Forum Europe, Austria) and Thomas Stelzer (Governor of Upper Austria, Linz, Austria).
Subsequently, in a panel discussion perspectives on this topic will be analysed. The following panelistswill provide information about the formation and future of rural areas:
(Vicepresident, Mihai Eminescu Trust, Sighisoara, Romania)
(Director General Kommunal Kredit Austria AG, Vienna, Austria)
(Head of Department I/5 Mobility Transport, Noise, the Austrian Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, Environment and Water Management, Vienna, Austria)
(Professor, University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna, Austria)
(Director General of the Österreichische Hagelversicherung, Vienna, Austria)
These dedicated entrepreneurs, as well as representatives of European, national and regional levels, are discussing ways to address the above-mentioned development in order to keep the rural regions attractive for the next generation.