Barcelona Provincial Council launches a guide on decentralised development cooperation for elected officials

28 abril 2021

The Barcelona Provincial Council has launched a new publication entitled «Guide on decentralised development cooperation for elected officials». This document, elaborated by the research collective La Mundial, aims at offering useful tools to elected officials in exercising their mandate focusing on a deep renewal and redefinition processes in order to address the challenges that this local policy is currently facing.

The document builds up from a diagnosis seeking to address the diversity of local realities within the Province of Barcelona. In addition to the study of different documentation, working sessions with municipal technicians and interviews with elected officials have been held.

The Guide is an invitation to reflect on the current challenging international context and points out the way forward for the transformation of local development cooperation policy. Likewise, it stresses the importance of a transformative approach to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, linking global issues with local reality. It proposes a new framework for action for decentralised development cooperation that calls for seeking alliances, reviewing approaches, and renewing the modalities of work in order to overcome the constraints often imposed by the system.

The document begins with a historical review of what municipal cooperation policies have been and points out its main characteristics. After, it provides a snapshot of the global reality, marked by the transnational and interdependent nature of the problems facing the planet and the emergence of a new development cooperation paradigm, which echoes the new international development agendas. Then, and after describing the main constraints and difficulties encountered in development cooperation to be more transformative, it identifies the main facing challenges. It concludes with a proposal for its own renewal from the deployment of the Strategic Areas. These are shared spaces of reality with interrelated and multidimensional issues that contribute to converge the discursive and the practical levels, to broaden the social and participatory base, and to incorporate knowledge generation into the development cooperation policy cycle.

In short, the Guide provides reflection and practical elements to better understand the time we live in and the enormous opportunities that municipal development cooperation has to lead or contribute to the sustainability of life in all its forms and to global coexistence in all their territories.

Video presentation (in Catalan)

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