Towards a sustainable quality management - Academies for EaP countries - Stage 1


As part of the collaboration between SIGMA and the GiZ Regional Fund for the Eastern Partnership, 25 senior level civil servants from the 5 Eastern Partnership countries participated in the first academy held in Podgorica (27-29 February 2023).




This first stage was hosted by the Regional School of Public Administration to introduce the participant countries in the public sector quality management dynamic in the Western Balkan region.

Day 1 started with a brief introduction to the Common Assessment Framework (background, content and process of implementation). Tihana Puzic, deputy head of the European CAF Resource Centre at the European Institute of Public Administration (EIPA), and Nick Thijs, senior advisor at SIGMA delivered a comprehensive session to initiate participants into the CAF. The introduction was followed by presentations from the countries and discussions about their efforts to build a sustainable quality management approach. In the afternoon the national CAF correspondents from Montenegro, Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, North Macedonia and Ukraine presented the role of the national CAF/QM centre. To close the day the Regional Quality Management Centre at ReSPA presented the story from feasibility study to outstanding results in disseminating the CAF in the regions and the European CAF Resource Centre at EIPA provided a glance on the Partnership with ReSPA and other national CAF centres in Europe.


During the academy, the countries presented some of their latest initiatives
in the quality management area





In the morning of day 2, a number of CAF users from the Western Balkans, the EaP region and the EU (Montenegro, ReSPA, Slovenia and Georgia) presented their practical insights and experiences.

In the afternoon, the main building blocks to design a sustainable approach were presented and discussed. The next step was “learning by doing” where participants explored the context and importance of building a sustainable quality management approach, leading to practical key building blocks (stepping stones) to reflect and apply by the countries.

On day 3, the group visited the Ministry of Public Administration, Digital Society and Media of Montenegro, where they received concrete insights on CAF implementation in the Ministry. Colleagues from the Eastern Partnership countries had the opportunity to team up with their pairs in Montenegro to discuss current and future initiatives. After the opening and welcoming speech, by Naim Gjokaj - State secretary Ministry of Public Administration, and presenting the donor matrix, Marija Hajduković - Director General shortly presented quality management in Montenegrin public administration. Nina Blažić - Acting Director General, presented the Law on General Administrative Procedures and, Andrej Đelošaj - Advisor the Government service bus.

The day concluded with a reflection on concrete next steps in creation of sustainable quality management approaches:

  • Preparing for the excellence path with CAF in Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine.
  • Building capacities – European CAF Resource Centre Maastricht – CAF in-depth training.
  • Implementing CAF in countries.
  • Learning, sharing, adapting and inviting more institutions to join the initiative.
  • Promoting excellence by organising CAF events in countries.
  • Embedding strategic communication along each step.



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