Europeanisation meets democracy from below: The Western Balkans on the search for new European and democratic Momentum (WB2EU)

The Foundation BFPE for a Responsible Society (BFPE) is a non- governmental, non-partisan and non-profit organisation founded in Serbia in 2003. The BFPE has a nineteen-year record of institution building, improving the quality of political human capital in Serbia, and
encouraging an on-going dialogue among various political parties as well as with representatives of civil society. Over the previous decade, the BFPE developed a large number of multi-year capacity building programs devoted to training men and women engaged in public affairs. The BFPE has been providing education and training to Serbian political and civil society leaders active in various sectors and engaged in reform processes. Our main role is to enable the socio-political elite to obtain the additional knowledge and mandatory skills necessary for both a democratic transformation of society and for participation
in European and Euro-Atlantic structures, through persistent efforts at multi-stakeholder dialogue and participatory decision-making. As a member in the Network of Schools of Political Studies operating under the auspices of the Council of Europe, the BFPE is active in fostering regional cooperation and partnership with sister institutions in the Western Balkans and Southeast Europe.

The BFPE has a team of highly qualified and motivated staff with extensive experience in the NGO sector, state administration and academia and formal education in humanities and social sciences. There are 10 full-time + 3 part-time (contract based) members on the BFPE team. In addition, BFPE always has a number of international and local volunteers, usually working for six months.

During those 19 years BFPE matured through a rich experience of
successfully completing dozens of complex projects every year. Thousands of people throughout Serbia and South East Europe participated our programs. We organised more than six hundred events from local debates, our Annual Seminars to the Belgrade Security Forum, were supported by reputable institutions and
 onors, cooperated with outstanding partners and experts from various fields: from international relations and security to gender equality and empowerment of minorities, especially Roma communities, from strengthening local self-governments and civil society organizations in working on sustainable and green development to capacity building of MPs, politicians, people working in public administration, people working in public administration, civil society and media representatives to contribute to the European future of our country and region. We are especially proud of our persistent efforts to keep societal and political dialogues alive at local, national and regional levels even in the times of heavy divisions within our own society and the Western Balkans. We remain convinced that serious and inclusive dialogue and education for democratic culture are the way forward in strengthening democratic and sustainable development, and are committed to deal with numerous present and future challenges our country, Europe and the entire world will be faced with.

Svetlana Stefanović, Executive Director, Foundation BFPE for a Responsible Society

Svetlana Stefanović is the Executive Director of the Foundation BFPE for a Responsible Society. She is responsible for the development of the Foundation and its employees, as well as for the design and implementation of strategy for the development of the Foundation.

From 2019 to 2022, she worked at the Foundation BFPE for a Responsible Society as a programme coordinator and was responsible for conceptualizing, coordinating, and implementing programme related to gender equality.

Also, from 2021, she is the National contact point for the second phase of the ROMACTED programme.

She has over fifteen years of professional experience in managing long-term and complex projects, as well as extensive experience in managing grand and complex events, e.g. forums, conferences, debates, etc. She has proven experience in leading different teams, as well as in training, preparation, and evaluation of different projects. Svetlana is a recognized specialist in the development and set up of mentoring programs and she has over 10 years of mentorship and capacity building work of youth with a special focus on young women.

She is one of the original team members that founded the Belgrade Security Forum (BSF) success story in 2011 and till 2021 she was the BSF Executive Director responsible for the overall organisation and realisation of the BSF and she led the team of fourteen people.

From 2003 to 2018 she was a volunteer and an activist on different projects in the European Movement in Serbia, then worked as an Office Manager and Project and Event Manager.

She is a member and Executive Secretary of the Women’s Government since its establishment in 2007. She is a Member of the Program Board of the Women’s Leadership Academy.

In February 2019, she was appointed a member of the Executive Board of the Fulbright and Friends Association. She is a member of the Forum for International Relations of the European Movement in Serbia.

She participated in the International Visitor Leadership Program on “Women in Leadership: Advancing Women, Advancing Humanity” in the USA and she is an alumna of this network. Also, she is an alumna of the School of political studies of the BFPE and CoE, and MASHAV programme.

She graduated in International Relations from the Faculty of Political Sciences, University in Belgrade.

Her fields of interest include international relations, human security, women rights, mentoring and non-formal education. She writes and publishes articles on these topics.

Radomir Aleksić, Programme Assistant, Foundation BFPE for a Responsible Society

Radomir Aleksić joined the Foundation BFPE for a Responsible Society in June 2020 as an intern, and in January 2021 he became a programme assistant.

As a program assistant, he is involved in the implementation of several different programs (BFPE leadership programmes, minority rights, development and decentralisation). Radomir also provides logistical support in organizing various seminars, conferences, and other events organised by BFPE.

He is part of the organizing team of the Belgrade Security Forum, where he is within the programme team in charge of communication with panellists and moderators.

Radomir graduated in international politics at the Faculty of Political Sciences, the University of Belgrade in August 2020. Although of different interests, he is most interested in regional cooperation.

Luka Milovanović, Programme Assistant, Foundation BFPE for a Responsible Society

Luka Milovanović works as a programme assistant at the BFPE since May 2020 and is engaged in the implementation of various programmes, primarily in the field of sustainable development and environmental protection.

Luka started his engagement in BFPE as an intern in September 2019. As an intern, he was involved in the implementation of numerous projects, including volunteering at the Belgrade Security Forum.

Since 2018, he has been a member of the Youth Forum of the European Movement in Serbia, and is the winner of the third prize in the call for best student papers on the topic of the European Union, organised by the Ministry of European Integration.

He is graduated in international politics at the Faculty of Political Sciences, the University of Belgrade and he is a scholarship holder of the Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development.

Former WB2EU Network members:

Marko Savković, Executive Director, BFPE

Đorđe Popović, Programme Coordinator, BFPE

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