Debate #4: Inclusion
#EU4Balkans in collaboration with DG REGIO-Interreg
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Inclusion is a wide issue that touches all the spheres of our lives: gender equality, minorities… and nowadays embracing diversity and enhancing inclusion is more important than ever. Meanwhile, the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted and therefore transformed the means to handle this issue in our societies. During this debate we will discuss the importance of inclusion especially in Western Balkan countries. We will show Interreg-IPA project examples and highlight how they help to enhance inclusion in the region. There will be space to get to know Young European Ambassadors’, Young Politicians’ and key opinion leaders’ work on ‘Inclusion’. Finally, the arts, as a vector of social cohesion, are fighting to survive today – but what can we do to strengthen their resilience?
Moderator: Olaf Bruns
- Mila Carovska
- Daniela Kortoci
- Slawomir Tokarski
- Dragan Ristić
- Jelena Plavetić
- Corina Raceanu
Minister of Education and Science – North Macedonia
Mila is a North Macedonian politician who has been in government since 2017. She is an avid promoter of human rights whose professional career to date has been marked by a commitment to social work on behalf of the most vulnerable and threatened citizens, whether it be Roma, disadvantaged youth, drug addicts, victims of domestic violence and so on. Projects she has managed over the years include organising drama workshops with children housed in institutions, hosting educational workshops, offering consultations for drug users and their families, and conducting field research. Mila has used her platform as Minister to advocate for gender equality, the elimination of violence against women, and anti-discrimination.
Young European Ambassador – Albania
Daniela is passionate about Arts and design, Film and photography, Youth activism and Environment. But, what really moves her is female empowerment. As a young graduate civil engineer she knows the importance of an educated woman in today’s world.
Director for the European Territorial Cooperation, Macro-regions, Interreg and Programmes Implementation I Directorate-General for Regional and Urban Policy
Slawomir Tokarski obtained PhD degree at the European University Institute in Florence in 1995. He joined the Polish administration and headed a team co-ordinating the preparations for the accession negotiations and preparing policy analysis for the Chief Negotiator. In 2004 he joined the Commission as a Cabinet member of the Commissioner responsible for the regional policy. In 2009 he was nominated Head of Unit dealing with economic policy and co-ordination of EU funding in DG MARE. In March 2012 he became Head of Defence, Aeronautics and Maritime industries in DG Enterprise. From 2016 until 2021, he was a Director in DG GROW responsible for Industrial policy and Innovation.
In 2021, Slawomir Tokarski joined DG REGIO as a Director for the European Territorial Cooperation, Macro-regions, Interreg and Programmes Implementation.
Dragan is a Serbian artist graduated from the Faculty of Dramatic Arts, University of Belgrade. He holds a master’s degree in the theory of Drama Art and Media. He is the founder of the band KAL-recognizable by its musical style Rock ‘n’ Roma, in which he appears as lead singer and guitarist. Dragan has been the director of The Romani Cultural Centre in Belgrade since 1998.
Head of Department, Directorate for European Territorial Cooperation, Ministry of Regional Development and EU Funds – Croatia.
Jelena holds a master in International Law at University of Zagreb. She has a long experience working for the Ministry of Regional Development and EU Funds in Interreg IPA CBC Programme in Croatia. During her experience there she held various job positions like task manager, legal officer and now head of department for Horizontal Affairs within the Managing Authority for Interreg IPA CBC Programme.
Program Director at Intercultural Institute Timisoara – Romania
Corina holds a PhD in Management at West University of Timisoara. She has 28-year experience in the cultural sector, specializing in cultural management, project management and public policies in sectors as cultural tourism, youth, social economy. She has 10-year experience of teaching as an associate professor at several vocational faculties in Timisoara. She was involved as a consultant or expert in several working groups for the Council of Europe. She is member of “Team Europe Romania” , member of “A Soul for Europe” initiative and member of the Board of Timisoara European Capital of Culture Association.
Olaf is a Brussels-based journalist. A former Deputy Head of the Brussels office of the international Tv news broadcaster Euronews, he now works as a freelancer. Amongst others, he writes for the European Green Journal and is the deputy editor-in-chief of the quarterly magazine Progressive Post. He provides Media Training via Crown Media and teaches journalism at the Brussels-based media school IHECS. He holds a master’s degree in Social Anthropology form Paris VIII University with several years of social science research work in various African countries.