Shaping Bosnia and Herzegovina’s future with lessons learned from the SAYP programme

Damjan Jugovic, a social science professional at the Council of Europe, specialises in enhancing democratic participation in Bosnia and Herzegovina through the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities. In June 2023, Damjan joined the Swedish Institute Academy for Young Professionals (SAYP). Are you interested in the programme? The SAYP call for applications has just opened.

With over 10 years of experience, Damjan concentrates on local governance of foreign affairs, focusing on diplomacy, security, and peace studies. He enrolled in the programme with the aim of improving his skills and applying them to his everyday work.

– I applied to the academy to enhance my skills in sustainable governance. The programme offered an ideal platform for expanding my knowledge and contributing to discussions on resilient governance, with the aim of applying these insights to my work at the council. Through the experience, I gained insight into the complexities of multilevel governance, understanding the impact of administrative decisions on human rights and local communities.

In the programme, Damjan met like-minded individuals.

– Networking was a significant opportunity for us, fostering potential partnerships and friendships. We anticipate reaping the benefits in the future.

The insights gained from SAYP will significantly impact Damjan’s future projects.

– The lessons learned will strongly influence my upcoming projects. I plan to implement standards from the Swedish model of multilevel governance and human rights in Bosnia and Herzegovina. My next project will focus on local-level human rights, allowing me to apply the insights gained from SAYP.

There were moments during the programme that were truly enlightening.

– In Malmö, our study visit to the Human Rights House revealed a unique coexistence of diverse stakeholders and NGOs, including Islamic groups advocating for women’s rights and LGBT rights. This experience was eye-opening, showcasing the potential for breaking prejudices, fostering collaboration, and realising common goals, challenging prejudices and bringing daily reflections on its transformative aspects.

His recommendation for young professionals, thinking about applying to the programme, is to seize the opportunity and make the most of it.

– Embrace diverse perspectives, recognising that the programme’s strength lies not only in the curriculum but also in building a network through connections. Lastly, take the opportunity to learn collaboratively.

About The Swedish Institute Academy for Young Professionals (SAYP)

The Swedish Institute Academy for Young Professionals (SAYP) is a training programme developed to build awareness, capacity and resilience in the practice of governance. Are you a young professional in the selected regions – Western Balkan or Baltic Sea Region and Eastern partnership countries and want to deepen your knowledge about modern sustainable governance? This is the programme for you.

Here you can get to know more about the programme in Western Balkans or in the Baltic Sea Region and Eastern Partnership.