It is with great pleasure that we invite you to the launch of the Digital Civic Center of the Western Balkans. The event will be held virtually on the 31st March from 16:30 – 19:00. The Digital Civic Center is a platform that will provide civic education - dialogue and information on socio-political issues - and pedagogical support to citizens and existing educational institutions of the societies of the Western Balkans further training on educational policy issues of the youth and adult civic education, a structural dialogue with political decision-makers as well as concrete related training measures for its members. With the aim to strengthen a critical, pluralistic, democratic and peaceful dialogue especially for young citizens from the region, by offering an attractive range of educational seminars and events, the program content will cover topics such as: regional cooperation, strengthening democracy and the participation of young citizens in political decision-making processes, the rule of law, democratic values, dealing with history, human rights and strengthening the European integration process of the Western Balkans. The Western Balkans should participate and contribute to the future of Europe. Its citizen's involvement through information sharing and active participation is essential to build a shared sense of belonging across the region and for them to contemplate their future in the same light as the future of the EU. The Civic Center will reflect the region's diverse identities, deal with its history, and contribute to shaping its future development. It will be a place of shared resources and a regional platform for free democratic expression accessible to all. With the aim to manifest the region's political reflection, advance good governance, and demonstrate the power of truly public space. The project’s permanent working group of civil society representatives (WB6 and EU) long term plan is to develop and realize one or more "real" physical civic centers, presenting a regional European offer of civic education with a corresponding adequate technical and spatial infrastructure. The Digital Civic Center of the Western Balkans is part of the overall project “one way ticket no more”, which is supported supported by crossborder factory in cooperation with the regional Youth Cooperation Office (RYCO) with financial support of the German Foreign Office and since 2022 also by the The Western Balkan Forum Beyond. The results of this project are particularly the result of civil society engagement of a group of young professionals from the Western Balkans, offering their insights and knowledge demonstrating a great commitment in working towards regional cooperation. Their advocacy work consists also for the establishment of places of political youth and adult civic education


16:00 – 16:15
Welcome and introduction to the project "One Way Ticket No More" and the platform "Digital civic center of the Western Balkans"

- Dr. Frédéric Jörgens, Deputy Head of Department in charge of Western Balkans, German Foreign Ministry - Mr. Albert Hani, Secretary General of Regional Youth Cooperation Office /RYCO
- Mr. Astrit Istrefi, Executive Director of The Balkan Forum

16:15 – 16:30
Keynote speech “The role of civic education in democratic societies”

- Mrs. Antje Müller, Program Director of the Zoran Djindjic Internship Programme of German Business

16:30 – 17:00
Discussion in two working groups

· How can I form my political opinion and what does critical thinking means?
· How to strengthen the role of (young) citizens in politics?

17:00 – 17:30
Presentation of the working groups and discussion with experts

17:30 – 17:45
Keynote speech “The war in Ukraine and its implications for the Western Balkans and EU” - Mr. Dušan Reljić, Head of Brussels Office of the German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP)

17:45 - 18:15
Discussion in two working groups

· How the war in Ukraine is changing Europe?

18:15 – 18:45

Presentation of the working groups and discussion with the experts

18:45 – 19:15
Final remarks