Good local governance plays an important role in the improvement of the living conditions of the people. Just think of clean drinking water, waste disposal, housing, health care and education. In order for local governments to live up to this role well trained local practitioners are necessary. Talented and ambitious people who, despite the limited resources available, want to work for their local community. Young people who choose work for the local government over the perhaps higher salaries and (international) opportunities that businesses and NGO’s might offer them. This new generation of local government practitioners are the leaders of the future and in a position to make a structural change.
’Fighting poverty starts at the local level” Thulani Twala, talent 2009, Greater Tzaneen, South- Africa
- International and Dutch local practice
In all three parts of the Talent programme incorporate international and Dutch local government practice
The training courses of the Hague Academy for Local Governance are practice oriented. In every training course, modules provided by internationally experienced experts and workshops of trainers are alternated with field visits and simulation games. During the training course the talents not only learn from experts and trainers, but the also exchange their own knowledge with that of other participant coming from all parts of the world. Naturally, the local policy of government x and that of local government y are not one-for-one interchangeable. That is why the programme focuses on the question how the participants can implement lessons and experiences from other countries into their own, locale context. Learning from each other, attaining ideas and experiences and getting to know different practices in order to broaden their scope of reference, that is what the training courses are all about!
During the short internship at a Dutch local government (municipality, water board or province) the talent experiences a Dutch government organisation from the inside for a couple of days. The talent visits multiple departments and visits projects. A real eye-opener, not only for the talents, but also very much for their Dutch colleagues. Experience has learnt us that this exchange is mutually beneficial and inspirational for all involved. Often the talent stays with a host family and they meet the local ‘ young civil servants network’ during for instance, a city tour or an informal reception, so they get to know one another in a more informal way too.
The network activities of the programme are twofold.
Firstly the online network gives talents the chance to communicate with colleagues from all around the world, before, during as well as after the programme. They will also use this community to give regular updates about their work and the progress of the Back-Home-Action plan.
Secondly, during the programme one live network activity is organized. This could take different forms, during one programme the talents visited the national Dutch ‘ Young Civil Servants Day’ for instance, and in april 2012, talent Doto Mgasa met the trainee group of the Dutch Association of municipalities (VNG).
“A project that intrigued me very much was the work of the water department in Drenthe. Water is also a very important topic in Kalongo, where we have a dry and a wet season. The creation of storm dams or artificial lakes, based on the water management I have seen in the Netherlands, are projects that I believe I can pursue for our town.” Irene Achola Origa, talent 2010, Kalongo, Uganda
- Talent programme themes
The different themes of the Talent programmes are based on the topics of the training courses of The Hague Academy for Local Governance. The different available themes of Talentprogrammes so far:
- Citizen Participation & Accountability
- Female Leadership
- Leadership & municipal management
- Local Economic Development
- Local Service Delivery & Millennium Development Goals
- Local Water policy
- Climate Change & Local Sustainable Development
- Financial Management
Partners of Talent for Governance can earmark their investment for one specific thematic programme. Read more about partnership possibilities.
“The theme of global warming and sustainable local development goes hand in hand wity my work since it is becoming a threat to the community development which I advocate”. Johnstone Kotut, talent 2011, Eldoret, Kenia.
Together with their application forms the candidate-talents submit a Real-Life-Case from their work; a short concrete project/issue on which they like to learn more during the programme. This project has been approved by their employers. During the Talent programme, the talents work on a Back-Home-Action plan for this project.
This Back- Home- Action plan will run through all programmes as a common theme. The talents will think about methods, approaches, best practices etc. that have been treated during the course and which aspects they could use in their own context. Foregoing the programme, the talents need to present which concrete question they have with regard to their Real-Life-Case and during the programme they will try to find the answers they need. So the starting point of the learning process are the issues of the young local practitioners themselves, they are responsible for their own learning process and need to critically reflect on the examples and theory they are provided with during the programme. They also ask critical questions to the Dutch colleagues they meet during field visits and internship.
Before, during and after the programme the talents will write regular updates on the progress of the project. In this community they also have the opportunity to ask for advice and suggestion from colleagues from all over the world.
“After my return to Kharkiv, I have discussed some improvements based on what I have learned during the Talent Programme. In my opinion, the switch to a digitalized local governance together with improved internal communication is vital for a municipality” Ganna Kukhareva, talent 2011, Kharkiv, Ukraine.