A Biggest role for EU’s cities in social policy developpment

A new network aimed at reinforcing the role of major European cities in the development of social policies is supported by the relevant Commission cities will be central to the development of these policies.

Set up together with member cities Bologna, Prague, Rotterdam, Southampton and Stockholm, the EUROCITIES-NLAO aims to give cities a greater role in the Open Method of Coordination, a method which relies on intergovernmental voluntary cooperation. The five involved cities will set up ‘observatories’ to monitor the local implementation of social policies and identify good practice. These cities will report on governance arrangements; commissioning and procurement practice; and provisions for quality management in a range of social service areas. Particular emphasis will be put on the areas of training/employment as well as social and supported housing. In their research, each observatory will engage with NGOs, the research community and public bodies at national level. EUROCITIES will coordinate this work and produce comparative reports.

Discussions and results from the observatories’ work will be used to monitor the implementation of common principles on ‘Active Inclusion of people excluded from the labour market’ already endorsed by EU Member States. These principles include guidelines and recommendations for minimum income schemes; inclusive labour markets; and quality social services which are seen as the three main pillars to support workless and excluded people. The EUROCITIES-NLAO is already receiving considerable attention as it will feed into the recommendations made to relevant actors in the field.

Up to now, EUROCITIES has repeatedly asked for improvements in favour of cities, particularly concerning EU procurement rules, as well as funding and, not least, policy coordination across these sectors. EUROCITIES sees this new project as a prime opportunity to provide evidence for the key role that cities play in the EU social policy-making process.

The EUROCITIES-NLAO will run as a pilot initiative until mid 2010, with potential for a roll-out across a wider range of cities after that.

Les commentaires sont fermés.