Local Participation in Visegrad Countries: How Are Politicians Rooted in the Civil Society?

TitleLocal Participation in Visegrad Countries: How Are Politicians Rooted in the Civil Society?
Publication TypeBook
Year of Publication2014
AuthorsPotluka, Oto, Idczak Piotr, Musiałkowska Ida, Kalman Judit, Spacek Martin, Kostal Ctibor, Ovadek Michal, and Tholtova Barbora
Number of Pages109
KeywordsBratislava, Budapest, civil society, civil society organisations, European Union, leaders, local elections, local participation, Poznan, Prague, regions, Visegrad Countries

This year, the Visegrad countries celebrate together twenty ve years since the socio, economic and political changes lead in collapse of totalitarian regimes. But the political transition brought also problems and new challenges not know previously. The rst free elections were held in the Visegrad countries that time and their inhabitants could choose their political representatives. Many of them came originally from the civil society and revolution movements. However, the political decision-making became disconnected from the civil society over time. We study the present rootedness of local political representatives in the civil society measured by their membership and leadership in civil society organisations in all four Visegrad countries. We are as well interested in engagement of activists from the civil society in an institutionalised political life, i.e. political parties and political movements. The purpose of this book is to discuss development of local democracy, local development initiatives and local social capital in growing urban areas in post-transition countries in which the civil society was almost absent or very weak twenty ve years ago. This publication comes up with overviews of the situation in four cities, one in each of the Visegrad countries. First the Polish case of Poznan is discussed. Then three capital cities follow: Czech Prague, Slovakian Bratislava and Hungarian Budapest.