Internatioanl co-operation is one of priorities of Latvian School of Public Administration (LSPA). During our 12 years history our partners were many of EU countries, USA and Canada. The overall goals of the co-operation projects were the enhancement and sustainability of a national capacity to develop and deliver high-level training in Public Administration and EU-issues. These are some examples of our international activities:
Neighbours partnership. We have very good and permanent co-operation with Lithuanian Institute of Public Administration (LIPA) and Estonian Centre for Public Service Training and Developement (ATAK). Annual Conferences were organized from 2002 onwards - it means regular exchange of experience, personal contacts, common projects (in NORDPLUS NEIGHBOURS and Canadian-Ukraine-Baltic Economic Management Training Programme). This partnership made noticeable impact on our training programmes and school management in general.
Partnership with Denmark. One of the most important projects was “ Establishing Continuous Profesional Training (CPT) for civil servants in EU issues in Latvia”. The Contracting Authority was Royal Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Contractor “PLS Ramboll Management". The duration of the project was 2000-2003. Within this Project 10 different modules of EU issues were developed and implemented in the LSPA training programme. The Train the Trainers programme was carried out for all EU modules. Denmark is one of most experienced countries in EU training modules development and delivery. This training programme very much helped Latvian civil servants in the EU accession process. Established personal contacts build the expert network and help in recruiting experts for new co-operation projects.
An interesting co-operation project was carried out with European Institut-Denmark in 2003: "Establishing of a Team Europe-Latvia".The overall objectives of the project were: enhance the capacity to provide information to raise the level of knowledge among the general public about the EU and Latvia's integration into the EU; to develope a Team of knowledgeable individuals who can provide information on Latvia's integration into EU at local and regional level. The Team was prepared and made a remarkable input in information activities.
Partnership with Italy.In co-operation with the Italian Society for International Organization (SIOI) the project "Enlarging the EU. Latvia toward accession" was implemented. Duration of the project: 2001-2003. 30 Latvian civil servants were trained on different EU issues in Riga and Rome. The partnership was established through the Embasies in Rome and Riga. The project was notable for the very high professionalism of the Italian trainers.
Partnership with USA. The first contacts were established through the USA Embassy in Riga. Our partner institution in USA is the Institute for Training and Developement (ITD). During the period 2001-2005 we co-operated on two projects: "Baltic Public Administration and Train of Trainers Programme" and "Baltic Anti-corruption Programme". Both projects consist ofwo parts - study visit for three weeks to USA and follow-on activities at home. The study visit programmes cover a very wide range of activities and meetings with American government at different levels, with NGOs, and with academic personnel in Universities. The classroom presenters in ITD provide the introduction and basic knowledge of USA Government working principles and functions. The follow-up part of the projects include the USA experts visiting all three Baltic countries and the organisation of workshops on concrete issues. Such an approach helps to involve more people in project activities and the benefit is much larger. During this period permanent and sustainable contacts with ITD experts have been established. The ideas obtained in Projects are used by our trainers in everyday training process.
Another project with USA expert assistance and with Fulbright grant support was "Developement of a Performance Measurement System". The result of the Project was: a training programme and training course materials, handbook for Trainers and Train the Trainers workshop. The course is still in the LSPA training programme and the permanent contact with experts continues.
Partnership with Ireland.The first contacts were established with Latvian Ministry of Foreign Affairs help. During the last three years LSPA in co-operation with Dublin Institute od Public Administration (IPA) organized several workshops in Riga . The target audience were civil servants from different state institutions and Ministries. Two workshops "Negotiating the Brussels Maze" were very well accepted. The topic was very important at the period of time - accesion to EU and first steps in the Brussels Maze. Many civil servants from Latvia participated in the IPA Training Programme for EU candidate coutries. All these activities increased the capacity of our public administration and very positive influenced the LSPA training curricula.
Partnership with Nordic countries. LSPA together with the Danish School of Public Administration (DSPA), the Finnish Institute of Public Management (HAUS) and the Lithuanian Institute of Public Administration (LIPA) participated in Programme NORDPLUS NEIGHBOURS project "Networking of Public Administration Schools and Institutes from Denmark, Finland, Latvia and Lithuania". Duration of Project-2004-2006. Nordplus Neighbours is one of the Nordic Council of Ministers' five mobility and network programmes. Its objective is to develop networks between education institutions, research institutions and non-governmental organisations in the field of education and lifelong learning. During the first year of the programme we established the network between all partner institutions and a network between EU issue trainers in all partner institutions. Now we work on a new training course "Lobbying in the decision making process in the EU institutions". This kind of co-operation project is a new experience for all involved partners-all are equal and all are responsible for results.