On the 1st of June, the network of ESF Managing Authorities of the Danube Region and representatives from the Danube Strategy met for the 8t time.
While the programming for the ESF+ Operational Programmes is still under way, representatives from eight ESF Operational Programmes in the Danube Region are discussing options for transnational cooperation and exchange on common topics.
In their opening statements the Priority Coordinators were reflecting upon the collaborative process between the ESF programme and the Danube Strategy. The Slovak Presidency of the EUSDR emphasised the role of embedding as one of the priorities of their presidency.
Strategic cooperation on social cohesion in the Danube Region
In the course of the ESF+ programming for the period 2021-2027, the Managing Authorities were defining potential topics for cooperation. The coordination teams of Priority Area 9 “People and Skills” and Priority Area 10 “Institutional Capacity and Cooperation”are accompanying this process and make sure to link the discussion and subsequent activities to the Danube Strategy’s actions and objectives.
Against this background, the Managing Authorities discussed the options for transnational exchange for the follwoing topics:
- Women in the labour market
- Active Ageing
- Life-long Learning
- Vocational Training
- Inclusion of vulnerable groups/Roma
- Social entrepreneurship
- Social innovation
The discussion aimed at assessing the state of play regarding which topcs will be addressed in which Operational Programmes. Furthermore, the meeting provided the opportunity to discuss how the Managing Authorities include specific topics in their programmes and possible ways forward for transnational cooperation.
Developing social innovation for the Danube Region
A vast majority of Operational Programmes will address social innovation. This not only opens up possibilities to commit to transnational cooperation in the Danube Region, but also resulted in actual cooperation via social innovation competence centres. In 2020, DG EMP launched a call for Managing Authorities for transnational competence centres tackling social innovation. A consortium in the Danube Region that includes Managing Authorities and assigned organisations alike was selected for funding. The initiative is called Social Innovation Plus (SI Plus) and is expected to intensify strategic cooperation and project development on social innovation in the Danube Region. I doing so, SI Plus has a great potential to complement the long-standing network cooperation.
Likewise, the Managing Authorities started to explore various ways for transnational cooperation, ranging from specific topics should be addressed my means of transnational cooperation in projects to exchange of good practices between Managing Authorities and project promoters. Hence, the up-coming meetings will also address different formats and means for transnational cooperation such as transnational calls or transnational partner networks.
- ESF Network | Partnerships
- ESF Network | Priority Area 9 “People & Skills”
- ESF+ Social innovation | European Commission – DG EMP