European Development Days in Warsaw

The European Development Days will be held in Warsaw on 15 and 16 December with the theme of the Spring and Arab democracy.

Interim Prime Minister of Tunisia, H.E. Beji Caid el Sebsi, and Chairman of the National Transitional Council of Libya, H.E. Mustafa Mohammed Abdul Jalil, are the latest special guests to confirm their attendance at European Development Days on 15-16 December, which in the wake of this year’s Arab Spring events, will focus for the first time on democracy, human rights and governance.

The two new speakers will join a long list of high profile world leaders and figures from the international stage who are already confirmed; including the President of Niger, H.E. Mr Mahamadou Issoufou, Haitian President H.E. Mr Michel Martelly, the President of Georgia H.E. Mr Mikheil Saakashvili, H.E. Ms Roza Isakovna Otunbaeva, President of the Kyrgyz Republic, and Professor Shirin Ebadi, Nobel Laureate.

European Commission President, José Manuel Barroso, Development Commissioner, Andris Piebalgs, and Commissioner for International Cooperation, Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Response, Kristalina Georgieva, will all attend. The Polish President, Bronisław Komorowski, will take part in the opening ceremony.

You can watch the event online while it takes place or choose particular panels and speeches. Photos and videos will be available for download and the website will also include a quote service. We invite you to follow the event at

Other High-level participants and programme
European Development Days, which this year is organised by the European Commission and the Polish Presidency, has become known as one of the key events on the international development calendar, and will take place in Warsaw between 15 and 16 December.

The key theme of European Development Days will be the link between development and democracy. Organized for the first time in a country east of the former Iron Curtain and in the context of the ongoing political changes in the Arab World the 2011 edition will bring together key players from both regions.

The event will provide a platform for putting the transition experiences of Eastern Europe into a new context.

The other main themes are:

- Aid effectiveness
- The new EU approach to development cooperation: an “Agenda for Change”
- Human rights

The two day event will also provide an opportunity for the development community to discuss the European Commission’s new approach to development cooperation the “Agenda for Change” – a commitment to increase the impact of aid by focusing on fewer sectors and those countries most in need.

European Development Days was launched in 2006 as an opportunity for key partners to come together to talk about how to make aid more effective. The five previous editions have featured 36 heads of state, 60 heads of government or ministers and 7 Nobel Prize laureates. The last edition in 2010 in Brussels attracted a total of 5,000 participants.

Organised by the European Commission and the Presidency of the Council of the European Union, European Development Days is Europe’s premier forum on international affairs and development cooperation. It has global reach and provides a collaborative platform bringing together thousands of development advocates, decision-makers and practitioners.

“Development and Democracy” is the 2011 edition’s main theme and focus. Twenty years ago, Central and Eastern Europe experienced intense transitions. Last year saw the beginning of uprisings in Northern Africa and the Middle East. What better time than now to bring together the development community to take stock, analyse and review the links between political change and socio-economic progress.

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