Governance system to foster the just transition process

STRATEGIC PLANNING | GOVERNANCE

Challenge

A just transition for former mining areas is an opportunity to address the specific issues, considering the high support from European Commission assistance and financing programs. To this end, it is necessary to set up an operational body representing the interests of all stakeholders who can contribute to this process.

Solution

Key actions: establishing the partnership between the parties involved and establishing the Jiu Valley Association for Integrated Territorial Development, consisting of representatives of local authorities in the Jiu Valley (Aninoasa, Lupeni, Petrila, Petrosani, Uricani, Vulcan), county authorities (Hunedoara County Council), the dominant academic institution (University of Petroșani), representatives of civil society on urban development (Valea Jiului Development Society Project Association), social issues (Autism Helping Hands Association), environmental issues (Urban Lab Valea Jiului Association), and business environment (Committee of Initiative Jiu Valley Association). The main purpose of the Association is to provide services in the field of initiation, development and promotion of skills and local development policies and the implementation of the mechanism of Integrated Territorial Investments (ITI) within the competence of member administrative units in the Jiu Valley, closely correlated with initiatives under the auspices of the just transition process. The founding members representing the NGO environment were elected as a result of a democratic, transparent procedure, with the support of the West Regional Development Agency.

The common objective pursued by the members through the establishment of the Association is to promote the general interest of the inhabitants of the territorial administrative units in the Jiu Valley area to improve their quality of life, through actions aimed at environmental protection, economic and social development, and development and attracting funds to finance investments necessary for sustainable development in the Jiu Valley area. In order to achieve the above mentioned goal, the Association will initiate in the next period activities of strategies’ development, coordination and assistance, support in implementation, initiation of projects and other specific related activities in local development.

For a start, the structure has a Board of Directors coordinated by the Rector of the University of Petroșani, assisted by the representatives of the local authorities and the NGO environment. The activities carried out so far aim at consolidating the administrative structure of the Association, as well as preparing the executive structure that will coordinate the implementation process of the mechanism of Integrated Territorial Investments in the Jiu Valley. The Association for Integrated Territorial Development is mentioned as a governance structure by the Strategy for the Socio-Economic Development of the Jiu Valley (under approval). The activities that will take place in the next period, following the approval by the Government of the Strategy for the Jiu Valley and the structure of ADTI VJ as an implementing body, refer to increasing the possibility of cooperation for territorial administrative units in the Jiu Valley to implement integrated projects for the benefit of the whole micro-region.

The association aims to carry out activities to achieve the following objectives:

  • elaboration and implementation of policies and strategies regarding the reduction of existing imbalances in the Jiu Valley area by stimulating balanced development, accelerated recovery of economic and social delays in less developed areas, as well as preventing the occurrence of new imbalances;
  • initiating, promoting and carrying out projects for the integrated development of the Jiu Valley area and for mitigating the development discrepancies between the member localities of the Association and the other localities at the level of the county and the region;
  • supporting access to the various national, European and international sources of funding in which legal entities in the territory defined in the Jiu Valley Strategy are eligible as applicants, partners or endorsers of funding;
  • participation in the elaboration of local, regional and national development strategies, plans and programs, as well as of the management plans of the funds destined for local development in the Jiu Valley area and of all the administrative-territorial units that make up the Association;
  • carrying out activities related to the financing and implementation of projects in accordance with the provisions of its own statute, based on protocols or delegation agreements
  • concluded with the managing and / or coordinating institutions of the funding programs;
  • ensuring the role of active partner for the local public administration authorities regarding the development aspects, in order to support the policies and actions of local and regional interest;
  • initiating the steps in order to attract as many private investments as possible in order to sustainably develop the Jiu Valley area and the administrative-territorial units that make it up, as well as supporting the development of entrepreneurship at the local level;
  • the organisation and development of partnerships and the promotion at the level of the territorial administrative units of the knowledge of the policies and practices of the European Union, as well as of the principles underlying the policies of regional development and integrated territorial investment;
  • identifying and promoting, in partnership, projects of local interest, promoting the Jiu Valley area and pursuing the attraction of foreign investments; developing collaborations with similar bodies and institutions and participating in the implementation of international projects of local interest;
  • participation as a unitary interlocutor for discussions with legal entities at regional level and to act as Managing Authority for European-funded programs and to be an active partner for local government authorities on development issues, in order to support the policies and actions of interest of the founding members of the Association;
  • supporting the approaches of the academic, scientific, university, research environment that can contribute to the development of the Jiu Valley area;
  • participation in the partnership structures established at national level, in the national committees and subcommittees, as well as in the working groups organised by the national institutions responsible for the management and administration of the programs financed by the European Union;
  • cooperation with university educational institutions for the elaboration and implementation of local and regional development policies and competencies;
  • ensuring the implementation of programs and actions that contribute to the conservation, protection and improvement of the quality of the environment in the Jiu Valley area;
  • ensuring the implementation of concrete actions at the level of rural and / or urban communities within the territorial administrative units members of the Association that aim to identify environmental problems and how to solve them;
  • ensuring the promotion of tourist objectives and the tourist potential in the Jiu Valley area, in order to attract tourists in the area;
  • supporting the development of all types of tourism in the Jiu Valley area, including activities such as identifying and promoting a brand tourist area;
  • supporting the creation of partnerships to organize and promote cultural, artistic and sporting events.

Link (Western Romania Regional Development Agency): https://adrvest.ro/cooperare-pentru-viitorul-vaii-jiului-facilitata-de-adr-vest/

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