Swiss-Ukrainian Educational Project (DOCCU)

On the way to building of the European, democratic society, Ukraine needs to implement a number of systemic transformations. The Association Agreement between Ukraine and the EU, ratified on September 20, 2014 once again underlined the rule of democratic principles, human rights and fundamental freedoms. The implementation of the above-mentioned Agreement presupposes a great deal of work for the practical development of a democratic society - the introduction of a systematic approach to the study of public processes related to the implementation of the powers of public administration and local self-government. This requires the formation of a systemic paradigm of democratic governance, which would organically combine all these social phenomena and processes generated by the democratization of public administration.

Current practice of public administration in Ukraine shows the inefficiency of traditional mechanisms of public administration and the need to introduce new concepts of public administration and management that meet the requirements of time. In particular, this is “good governance”, which is considered a necessary element of a democratic political regime. The main feature of this concept is the construction of activities of authorities with the involvement of civil society organizations and the private sector. The democratic political process should give citizens a real opportunity to a be part of it. It is necessary to promote the freedom of action and expression of personality, because “freedom and opportunity (ability) for person to act and express himself are the most important indicators of honest and skillful management”. This is a model of democratic governance, which is currently the most attractive for Ukraine, because it promotes the interaction of the state and society. Implementation of this model requires appropriate policies, in particular in the area of education.

In this context, the consolidation of democratic governance principles in local communities through the dissemination of education knowledge for democratic citizenship and human rights education is of actual importance. Education for the development of democracy in Ukraine is an integrated direction of state and public activity aimed at realizing a wide range of approaches, programs and initiatives during a lifetime, among which education for democratic citizenship and education for human rights occupied the main place. A number of initiatives, aimed at strengthening of Ukrainian society, expansion of democratic governance has been implemented in Ukraine.

About the Project

The Swiss-Ukrainian educational project “Development of Civic Competences in Ukraine” (DOCCU) is considered to be one of such initiatives, which is being implemented in Ukraine within the framework of the Swiss Cooperation Strategy for Ukraine for 2014-2018, namely within the framework of its “Governance and Restoration of Peace”. The Swiss Confederation sponsors the project and Zurich Pedagogical University (Switzerland) is the main project executor.

The main goal of the project is to support the sustainable development of civil society through the dissemination of knowledge about education for democratic citizenship and human rights education in Ukraine.

The project is intended to improve the process of cooperation between public authorities, the education system and the public to create a democratic environment in local communities.

The first phase covers the period: September 1, 2013 - December 31, 2018.

During the implementation of the project, cooperation and support of the Presidential Administration of Ukraine, Verkhovna Rada Committee for Science and Education, the Ministry of Education and Science of Ukraine, the National Agency of Ukraine on Civil Service, the National Academy of Pedagogical Sciences of Ukraine, regional state administrations, international and public organizations is important.

The project provides the (widespread and in-depth) implementation of education for democratic citizenship and human rights education to achieve the following goals:

  • Strengthening Local Government through the support of democratic educational establishments.
  • Implementation of the principles of “good governance” by disseminating knowledge about education for democratic citizenship as well as human rights education among government officials through the introduction of an appropriate training course in educational programs for the training and qualification of civil servants and local officials at the national and regional levels.
  • Strengthening the national debate on democratic citizenship based on the European Social Charter on education for democratic citizenship and human rights education. 

The DOCCU project aims to implement education for democratic citizenship and human rights education at the national, regional and local levels among civil servants and educators through the transfer of knowledge and practical experience that will be made available to the general public through face-to-face and distance learning, as well as the dissemination of knowledge through the media and the issuance of special publications for civil servants, local officials and educators.

The task of the DOCCU is to contribute to the creation of an environment in which the rule of law and human rights, gender equality, balanced division of powers and economic stability are priorities. Good governance and gender equality are related topics that the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation pays particular attention to. Although both concepts are enshrined in the law, more effort needs to be made to minimize the gap between the provisions of the law and reality.

Seminars and Trainings

The project, in cooperation with the National Agency of Ukraine on Civil Service, ensures the implementation of Component 1 “Civil Servants” at the national level. The component is aimed at building civil society in Ukraine with the aim of:

  • the implementation of the principles of Good Governance through the dissemination of education for democratic citizenship and human rights education among government officials;
  • establishment and implementation of a training course on education for democratic citizenship and human rights education in training programs for qualification of civil servants and local officials at the national and regional levels;
  • the establishment of democratic principles in the system of public administration;
  • strengthening the national debate on democratic citizenship based on the European Social Charter on education for democratic citizenship and human rights education.

The project provides organization of two three-day training seminars, which will develop educational modules for the development of civil competencies and their further implementation in the curriculum of higher educational establishments. In 2017, the project activity involved the preparation of 100 master trainers for the development of civil competencies for higher educational establishments who train specialists within the framework of master’s program “Public Management and Administration”.

The training seminar program was developed in accordance with the European Social Charter for education for democratic citizenship and human rights education, adopted by the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe on May 11, 2010 taking into account the recommendations and materials of the education manuals for democratic citizenship and human rights education.

The topics of the didactic workshops for teaching educators for democratic citizenship and human rights education on the project “Development of Civic Competences in Ukraine” include training in two blocks.

BLOCK 1. Education on Democratic Citizenship and Democratic Governance

  • Democratic Citizenship and Democratic Governance as Leading Trends in the Development of Society.
  • Democracy: content and features. Modern democracies, democratic societies and democratic governance.
  • Contemporary Concepts of Public Administration and Civil Service.
  • Development of professional competencies of civil servants.
  • Democratic governance in the daily practice of civil servants, benefits, problems, challenges and development.
  • Education for democratic citizenship and human rights education.

BLOCK 2. Fundamentals of Studying the Course on Education for Democratic Citizenship and Human Rights Education.

  • Education for democracy and human rights. Methodology of teaching education for democratic citizenship and human rights education.
  • Professional competencies required coaches to teach education for democratic citizenship and human rights education courses.
  • (Laying) portfolio of education for democratic citizenship and human rights education trainer.

The official website of the project: http://doccu.in.ua

Collection of methodical materials “Civic Competences in Vocational Education of Civil Servants and Officials of Local Self-Government”

 

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