Civil society for transparency of the national and municipal policy in the South Black Sea region

The project aim was to improve the mechanisms for control over the work of the public administration in the in the South Black sea region in Bulgaria by creating partnership between the civil society structures and the administration. This initiative supposed to increase the transparency and accountability of the later. The project activities included: 1. analyses of the main problems and obstacles in the work of the targeted administrations; 2. development of precise recommendations for improvement; 3. establishment of a system for information exchange, including system for signals of cases of corruption; 4. realization of series of round tables for more transparency in the work of the administrations in the region; 5. activities for information and publicity.

The secrets of municipal property management

The project aimed at increasing the transparency in the work of the municipal administrations in the country through monitoring and analyses of the practices in the municipal property’s management process, privatization, restitution and public procurement. Some of the main project activities include: 1. development and dissemination of information brochures on the topics: “Citizens and local authority – administrative service”” and “”The poverty – national problem connected with corruption””; 2. nomination and price award for the best anti-corruption innovation practice in local government based on the conducted analyses; 3. realization of practical seminars for citizens and experts from the municipalities; 4. regular press conferences presenting the accumulated information.”

Publicity and transparency in the work of the administration, governance and public spending of the municipal council of the Sopot municipality

The project aimed at increasing the transparency and accountability of the work of the municipality of the city of Sopot by improving the partnership between the structures of the civil society and the local authorities. The project activities included: 1. assessment of the transparency and accountability in the work of the municipal administration; 2. evaluation and development of recommendations regarding the transparency in the work of the municipal council; 3. development and realization of a web based portal for dissemination of information regarding the activities of the municipal administration for improving the access to information for citizens and the business.

Development of a sustainable system for civil monitoring of the effectiveness and transparency of the work of the public administration and for overcoming the existing deficiencies of the administrative services for the citizens and for the business

The project aimed at increasing the transparency and accountability of the public administration through the creation of a sustainable system for inclusion of the civil society structures in the formulation and implementation activities of the public administration. In short, the project included: 1. an analysis of the current deficiencies in the work of the public administration with the citizens and the business; 2. formulation and development of mechanisms for improvement through analyses of best practices; 3. implementation of a sustainable system for cooperation that guarantees the constant involvement of the civil society actors in the practical implementation of the policies of the public administration in four pilot municipalities; 4. realization of seminars for the target groups concerning the European best practices of good governance.

Curbing corruption and promoting transparency in the work of municipal councils in Bulgaria

The project aimed at identifying corruption-generating practices in the work of local authorities. The project fulfillment included three stages: 1. an analysis of the Municipal Council documentation and the local newspapers; 2. a focus-group discussions with Municipal Councilors and community representatives for determining the target groups and spheres of competing interests; 3. social experiments in resolving typical cases in three of the selected municipals. As an outcome a Policy Paper and a Handbook comprising analytical material, suggestions for amending the Rules and Procedures of Municipal Councils’ functioning and for public feedback was developed.

Partnership between the citizens and the municipal administration – a guarantee for transparency and accountability

The project aimed at increasing the capacity of the structures of the civil society in four municipalities in the fight against corruption. The capacity building refers to the capabilities of the civil society organizations to implement models and methods for monitoring and control over the public services provided by the municipal administrations . The project main activities included: 1. development of a local civil society partnership network; 2. survey of best practices in Bulgaria with regard to services of general interest provided by the local authorities 3. development of a web site for the partnership network in order to facilitate the communication between the target groups as well as to ease the monitoring process; 4. analyses of the existing deficiencies in the provision of services of general interest in the selected four municipalities and development of action plans for improvement; 5. realization of round tables with representatives from the civil society sector and the administration in order to discuss and improve the action plans; 6. monitoring over the implementation of the provided recommendations in the action plans; 6. analysis of the results of the project and dissemination of the good practices achieved.

Support and assistance in out-of-court resolution of conflict in the sphere of secondary education through the establishment of school mediators

The project was realized under the Coalition 2000 and USAID initiative: “Civil Society Against Corruption”” Small Grants Program. Its primary goal was the legitimization of the school mediator as a possibility for resolution of conflicts in the sphere of secondary education.”

Civic monitoring over the process of issuing licenses by Hygienic-Epidemic Inspectorate and National Fire and Emergency Safety Service in cases of building and reconstruction

The primary goal of the project was to identify and investigate corrupt practices in the process of issuing licenses in the targeted supervising agencies. The project team made official meetings with representatives of the target institutions: the Hygienic-Epidemic Inspectorate (HEI), the Fire and Emergency Safety Service (FES) and the Ministry of Health to present the project and negotiate the terms of project partnership. The main project outputs referred to: analyzes of citizens’ complains for illegally issued licenses; monitoring of the routine activity of the targeted supervising agencies;development of a legal data base the observed field and a hot phone line for signals; an active public awareness campaign for popularization of the investigated corrupt practices and the proposed measures for counteraction.

Corruption in Bulgarian SMEs and measures to fight it

The project was realized in the course of Coalition 2000 and USAID Open Government Initiative Project: “Civil Society Against Corruption”” – Small Grants Program. It aimed to identify the structure of corrupt practices related to SMEs in the country and to provide assessment of the inflicted losses in the business sector i.e. еstimate the costs of corruption in the SME sector. The project activities include surveys and publication of a book: “”Do-it-yourself”” Manual of Tools Designed to Build Ethical and Transparent Corporate Culture For SMEs.”

Mutual trust for better governance

The project aimed at improving public trust in the administration at local and regional levels by increasing transparency and monitoring capacity of the administration. The project sought to promote the practices of good governance through the partnership between the civil society organizations and the municipal administration. Some of its main activities included: 1. survey assessing the transparency of the local and regional administrations; 2. public opinion survey for the identification of the main deficiencies of the targeted administrations; 3. realization of educational seminars and round tables; 4. development and publication of analysis with recommendations on the topic: “mutual trust – a barometer for good governance””; 5. activities for information and publicity.”

Determining actual and potential hypothesis of conflict of interests in the state administration in Bulgaria

The project aimed at limiting the manifestations of conflict of interests hypothesis in the work of the Bulgarian public administration bodies, and a research methodology for analyzing such manifestations was elaborated. Furthermore the EU and other relevant international legislation was analyzed and a sociological survey on the public perception for the effectiveness of the conflict of interests regulation. As a result a Catalogue of Effective Legal Mechanisms for limiting the possibilities of conflict of interests manifestation in the work of the state administration was elaborated. A training course with administration officials for recognition and counteraction of the conflict of interests problem was realized.

Partnership between the civil society and the administration – a guarantee for transparency, accountability and control

The project aimed at increasing the transparency and accountability of the regional and local administrations by providing mechanisms for control over their activities through the establishment of a strategic partnership with the civil society. Some of the activities that the project foresee are: 1. development of information channels between the administration and the civil society through information campaigns, TV channels (24 programs in total), brochures, publications in the media etc.; 2. selection and implementation of best practices with regard to transparency, accessibility and accountability in the selected municipal administrations; 3. realization of seminars, round tables, workshops as well as educational seminars for experts from the municipal administrations with representatives from the civil society sector; 4. realization of a “day of the open doors”” in the selected administrations; 5. development of a guidance document regarding the opportunities that a partnership between the civil society and the administration can offer.”

Open doors for the citizens of Razgrad

The project’s main goal was the establishment of civic control over local self-government through the institutionalization of a civic defender (ombudsman) in the municipal administration of Razgrad. Some of its main activities included: 1. information board for corruption signals in the office building of the Municipality; 2. realization of a public forum “Civic Defense and Mediation Through the Local Ombudsman Institution””; 3. dissemination of materials / reports of the ombudsman and press conferences.”

Civic pressure on corruption and incompetence at local and state administration levels regarding illegal construction

The project was designed to fight against corruption in the municipal and state administration in the sphere of illegal construction. for the purpose an expert group monitoring the process of issuing construction licenses in the municipalities of Sofia was established during the actual project implementation. The project activities included: 1. analytical report on corrupt practices in cases of illegal building in Sofia Municipalities based on one-year survey; 2. development and dissemination of a brochure: “What Should We Know in Case of Illegal Building and Reconstruction””; 3. setting up of a citizens “”Complaints and Information Desk”” for legal assistance and lodgment of signals; 4. research and publicity on the municipal-level process of issuing construction licenses; 5. active public and media campaign to educate citizens about their rights in cases of illegal construction and to present the made disclosures of corruption in this field.”

Monitoring and evaluation of the possibilities for improving the transparency of the municipal administration

The goal of the project was to increase the capacity of the civil society organizations for improving the transparency of the work of the local and municipal administrations. The project offered practical guidelines for representatives of the civil society for better cooperation with the municipal administration and created a local network for monitoring and evaluation. The initiative included: 1. a round table on the topic “Transparency in the administration and the involvement of the civil society””; 2. a survey among representatives of the target groups; 3. an analyses, followed by recommendations, on the legal framework and the internal procedures guiding the work of the municipal administrations in their cooperation with the civil society; 4. development of an web site for the ease of the civil society network.”

Limitation of the corrupt practices in the fields of public health services and the educational system in Pernik municipality through enhancing the role of civil society

The project aimed to build a capacity for the existing public anti-corruption council in Pernik Municipality. The project supported the establishment of mechanisms for reporting corrupt cases by citizens in the sphere of public health services and education system. It also aimed to improve the legal culture of citizens through the realization of informational and educational campaigns.

Effective Investigation of European Union Funds Abuse in Bulgaria

The basic goal of the initiative was to raise the competencies of the Bulgarian investigative agencies and to harmonize the practices in the investigation of crimes concerning the financial interests of the European Communities. The imminent objective was to provide practical expert support to state investigators and prosecutors handling abuse of EU funds in Bulgaria.The outputs of the project are: 1. development of a methodology for the investigation of EU funds abuse; 2. publishing a manual, “Effective Investigation of European Union Funds Abuse in Bulgaria.” The manual is a practical guide to be used in the daily work of state investigators and prosecutors; 3. organizing a training seminar on the subject for state investigators and prosecutors handling EU funds abuse.