AUBG is launching the Advocacy Academy, a new initiative aimed at creating dialogue between governmental institutions and the private sector. A cooperation with the Bulgarian Entrepreneurial Association (BESCO), the project is part of the university’s Center for Information, Democracy and Citizenship (CIDC).
The Advocacy Academy aims to build an effective network of participating business leaders and civil servants (from key ministries, agencies and local authorities) trained in the principles and practices of political advocacy. It will actively support dialogue between institutions and the private sector and contribute to the creation of an ecosystem where the public and private sectors work together to adapt existing and adopt new legislation, as well as to introduce innovative legal practices that actively promote democratic and free market. The project was supported by a grant from the Center for International Private Entrepreneurship in Washington, DC.
“As an educational institution, AUBG has know-how, and the non-governmental sector does a lot, but the results are not always sufficient. That’s why we decided to cooperate through an educational initiative that would focus our energy and efforts in one place,” said Tihomira Doncheva, Director of CIDC. “In the short term, we will build a knowledge base and learn about advocacy in other parts of the world. We have yet to develop an advocacy curriculum, as well as upskill a small, select group of business leaders and government officials based on international best practices in advocacy.”
AUBG and BESCO are teaming up, offering the experience of both organizations. AUBG will provide the institutional framework as a trainer of the most successful business leaders in the region, while BESCO will provide advice and expertise as a successful example in the field, as well as support with its network in the search for participants and guest speakers.
“Advocacy Academy is the missing tool of the civil sector, business and even the administration, with which to create functional organizations, strategic legislation and proactive leaders for the Bulgarian political reality”, commented Nedyalko Dervenkov, Executive Director of BESCO. “We believe that the academy will build democratic foundations, empower the civil sector and business, while giving more clarity to the administration about the real needs of business.”