Recent training on project management in Poland, Sweden and Lithuania

In the Umbrella project framework, we organized this month another seminars and training on project management. The meetings on 28th Nov in Gdansk, 5th Dec in Kalmar, Sweden and on 10th Dec in Klaipeda, Lithuania.

You can still register for the meetings we will have in January and February 2020, they are all for free, but we have a limited number of places. Register using this link:

Agenda for the training on BASIC/ELEMENTARY level:

Welcome and introduction to the UMBRELLA Project Management Framework – fundamental concepts

  • UMBRELLA Framework vs. Project Life-Cycle
  • Analysing needs
  • Generating Ideas
  • Estimating Long-Term Effects
  • Problem and Objectives Tree Analysis
  • Reviewing Available Funding Programmes
  • Initiating a Project
  • How Detailed is the High-Level Planning
  • Stakeholders
  • Identifying Project Partners
  • Developing a project logical framework
  • Work Breakdown Structure
  • Main planning tools
  • Risk Management
  • Project Closure
  • Sharing the results
  • New project ideas
  • Submitting the project application
  • Developing the project logical framework

Read about our project SIA4Y  “Strengthening civil society rights by information access for European youth” both financed in terms of EU programme “Europe for citizens” (2014 – 2020) meeting on 6 and 7th Nov 2019 in Brussels.  This convention about Freedom of Information (FoI) was organised by one of the partners –  WeCitizens, in partnership with EESC and the University of Louvain, in the framework of the SIA4Y project, 14 speakers of 11 different nationalities intervened during these two half-days.

International trends

According to Ms Adlin Hulin, the promotion of freedom of expression is high on the agenda of UNESCO, which has competencies in the field of culture and education.

Transparency International actively fights against corruption. Matilde Manzi, from TI-Europe, explains the slow process of increasing protection for whistleblowers. EU Member states need to transpose a recent EU Directive and should extend its scope. They also need to decide whether anonymous denunciations of crimes are accepted.

Mrs Assya Kavrakova, from ECAS, shows that we have in 2018 an unprecedented increase in civic engagement. Taking into account that young people act differently, we should be quick enough to grasp the opportunity to enhance democracy.

Mr Alvaro Gonzalez Perez presented two initiatives of his European students federation, AEGEE: http://yvote.eu and Generation Climate Europe (http://gceurope.org). The latter fosters youth climate dialogue, in order to reach joint statements and require stronger climate change policies.

Mr Jean-Paul Pinon, CEO of WeCitizens (Belgium), insists on measures that make politicians more accountable. He also advises a general measure to increase the interest of the average citizen for politics: removing the withholding tax (the tax paid directly by the employer to the State, on account of the employee).

Mrs Rachel Hanna, from Assess Info Europe (Madrid), reminds that we must find the right balance between access to data and protection of privacy. Concerning lobby, everything should be transparent.

Mr Jean-Marie Sohier, from Sealord (Belgium), suggests that citizens set commonly accepted policy standards and investigate how politicians comply.

Country experiences

Mrs Eila Heikkilä presents the Ohjaamo system in Finland: a network of One-Stop Guidance Centers that offer support to persons under the age of 30 for various issues (career planning, life management, participation, etc.).

Ms Wilma Haan, CEO of Open State Foundation, reminds also the economic benefits of transparency by public bodies. Her Foundation publishes big databases: Open Spending (financial data of all the local governments in the Netherlands), Open ‘Poen’, Open municipality, Open multilateral, PoliFLW NL/EU.

Mr JP Pinon shows some Belgian initiatives. WeCitizens started publishing a transparency index of political parties, and a database of politicians (PoliticiansOnline.be). Among many other initiatives, the portal Transparencia.be is more directly helping citizens to access documents from public bodies.

Mrs Magda Leszczyna-Rzucidło, explains how they intend to make young people familiar with their right to know, through Youth Advisory bodies like Youth Councils, Youth Boards in various organisations including Euroregion Baltic Youth Board, also represented at this meeting by the YB Chairwoman – Ms Julia Orluk.

Mr Alexander Fanta, an investigative journalist from Netzpolitik (Berlin), gives some examples of how citizens can make an interesting investigation using access to public information. He tells that schools for journalists in his country (Austria) to not really teach the rights of such access.

Mrs Carina Paju mainly commented to initiatives of Transparency International Estonia: Transparency in capital cities (about response time) and Political party financing data.

Mr Johannes Filter, from FragdenStaat.de (Germany), says that involving people will not happen, in the first place, with a heavy investigation about corruption, but with very local questions. To get a youngster more involved in FoI, give him opportunities to find easily information he is personally interested in. FragdenStaat has a webpage allowing students to easily send requests concerning past examination questions for the General University Entrance Qualification.

Guide of good practice

Prof. S. Mrozowska and B. Kijewska, from the University of Gdansk, presented the outcome of their work about FoI, structured in three parts: (I) legal grounds, (II) youth policy and (III) examples of initiatives in the five partner countries.

You can now download our SIA4Y project Code of Good practice – “Youth access to public information. Towards a better understanding of democracy”.

To download the document click below:

SIA4Y_Code of Good Practice

The right to freedom and access to public information, enabling young people to search for and receive public documents, serves as a vital tool in the fight against corruption, facilitates full participation in public life, increases governing efficiency, encourages investment and helps enforce fundamental human rights. The openness of public authorities’ actions is an indicator of a democratic state. It is the fundamental guarantee of citizens’ trust in the state and its law, without which the harmonious functioning of society is not possible. Information on the activities of public bodies may be relevant for both the individual and the general public. Access to it is one of the essential tools enabling citizens to exercise control over those in power.

That is why it is so vital to ensure the broadest possible access to public information. At the institution level,
it means creating conditions for sharing information, and at the citizen level, the ability to exercise this right (I know how and for what). Only those young people who are informed about their rights and obligations can independently make decisions and pursue their goals as full citizens.

Visit our project website: www.civicyouth.eu

This month we’ve participated in 12h Baltic Sea Tourism Forum #BSTF in Brussels. One of the panels: Success stories of international tourism cooperation in the Baltic Sea Region was moderated by Magda Leszczyna-Rzucidło, Head of the ERB International Secretariat.

13 November 2019 | Brussels/Belgium 12th Baltic Sea Tourism Forum SHARE | INSPIRE | CREATE

Baltic Sea Tourism Forum In 2008 the then Ministry for Economy, Employment and Tourism and the Tourist Board of the German state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern initiated the first Baltic Sea Tourism Forum (Summit) which took place in Rostock / Germany. Core aims of this touristic rapprochement process were to develop forms of collaboration, which complement the countries’, and regions’ own tourism strategies in a meaningful way and give the Baltic Sea as a tourism destination a better place on the market.

Major aims are:

 Support a sustainable and balanced development of tourism and voice the interest of the tourism economy in the Baltic Sea region.

 Strengthen the sustainable and responsible cooperation of all Baltic Sea region countries and exploit the existing international development potentials more efficiently.

 Provide and secure a permanent platform for information and know-how exchange with the Baltic Sea Tourism Forum at its core for continuous collaboration on the basis of a multilevel process.

 Position the Baltic Sea as a coherent travel destination on the global tourism market and promote the area as an attractive, safe and natural destination for international travellers.

Since 2012, the annual forum is closely linked to the implementation process of Policy Area Tourism in the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region. It contributes strongly to the aims of the macro-regional strategy, the revised action plan and defined actions adopted by the European Commission in 2015. Objectives of the 12th Baltic Sea Tourism Forum For the first time in the history of the annual tourism conference, the venue is located outside the Baltic Sea region – and for a good reason. With the participation of the European Union, this year’s forum aims to bring together stakeholders from the Baltic Sea region with institutions and representatives in Brussels. In the context of international cooperation successful examples from the Baltic Sea Region will be presented, suggestions for strategic and innovative approaches will be given and insights with regard to the Multiannual Financial Framework 2021-2027 provided. Inspiring keynotes on sustainability and the future of tourism will complement the agenda.

Under the motto SHARE | INSPIRE | CREATE the forum underlines the reasons for cooperation beyond national borders in a macro-regional context.

SHARE achievements, as the first session of the day, concentrates on the potentials and challenges of cross-border work by focusing on the overarching macro-regional strategies as well as on examples of interregional project initiatives. The exchange on experiences and future needs aims at helping to clarify commonalities as well as emphasising the advantages of sustainable cooperation at macro-regional level.

A more detailed insight on innovative approaches will be given in the session INSPIRE partners. BSR tourism market data & trends and international product & service development can mean long-term benefits for the tourism sector in the BSR and should be considered as an imperative when positioning the tourism industry on international level.

In terms of the new multiannual financial framework of the EU for the period 2021-2027, the third session is dedicated to CREATE perspectives. The new EU funding period will not just affect international cooperation, as it influences the funds available in programmes such as Interreg, but will also define thematic priorities of EU policy. A comprehensive outlook will provide a better understanding of how conditions need to be adjusted for the future of BSR tourism cooperation.

Date and Venue Renaissance Brussels Hotel // Rue du Parnasse 19, 1050 Brussels, Belgium www.marriott.com/hotels/travel/brubr-renaissance-brussels-hotel Contact point of the BSTF Baltic Sea Tourism Center Johannes Volkmar // j.volkmar@auf-nach-mv.de // +49 381 40 30 663 Anne Vollerthum // a.vollerthum@auf-nach-mv.de // +49 381 40 30 653


Michael Cramer, MdEP
Asa Bjering, Baltic Sea Commission
Anna Pollock, Conscious.travel
Maciej Hofman, DG EAC | European Commission

Session 1: SHARE achievements

Blanka Belosevic, EUSAIR
Magda Leszczyna-Rzuidlo, Euroregion Baltic
Tomasz Naprawski, Baltic Museum: Love IT!
Ira Lahovuo, Archipelago Access
Niclas Fjellström, Baltic Sea Food
Constanze Metzger, Routes4U

Session 2: INSPIRE partners

Prof. Björn P. Jacobsen | Tjark Schlegel | Christopher Blank, University of Applied Sciences Stralsund
Karin Melbye Holm, Danish Tourism Innovation

Session 3: CREATE perspectives

Ramune Genzbigelyte-Venturi, DG Grow | European Commission
Joanna Mouliou, DG Regio | European Commisison
Andrea Krabbe, PAC Tourism (EUSBSR)
Lidija Bajaruniene, Ministry of Economy and Innovation of the Republic of Lithuania

We recommend visiting #BSTC profile: Balticsea.travel for inspiration on your future journeys.

#sustainabletourism #SouthBalticSea

Do you have a concrete project idea that you would like to submit in upcoming call for proposals? Umbrella project gives you the opportunity to “Rent-an-Expert”!

How does it work?

A pre-selected Expert will support you in assessing and developing a complete project application in your organisation:

  • Providing information on the application procedure
  • Tailoring project ideas
  • Helping to find partners
  • Developing part of the application- Budget
  • Developing part of the application- Description of the activities

All you have to do to apply for this service is to fill in the project framework we prepared for you (you can download it below). Your project ideas will be collected and categorized; later on, the most suitable expert from our “Pool of experts” will be assigned to your organization and single meetings for project development will be scheduled.

Download our Project idea form

If you would like to apply to receive Umbrella’s support, please fill in the form  Umbrella_project_idea  and send it by email to the Umbrella’s partner competent for your territory: http://umbrellaproject.eu/partners/

N.B.  We do not substitute the EU Programme’s Contact Points. We do not only provide consultations, but we aim at transferring knowledge to help our stakeholders to become independent in future cross-border cooperation.

Join us for the Umbrella project management training in Telsiai on 22nd November 2019. 

You can register to his training, as well as all the others (in Lithuania, Sweden, Poland and Denmark) using this registration link: https://bit.ly/2IuFu7B

You can choose the training on the following dates and cities:

  1. 21/10: National training in Kristianstad (SE)- Basic
  2. 28/10: National training in Chojnice (PL)- Basic
  3. 28/11: National training in Gdansk (PL)- Advanced
  4. 22/11: National training in Telsiai (LT)- Basic
  5. 04/12: National training in Ringsted (DK)- Basic
  6. 05/12: National training in Kalmar (SE)- Basic
  7. 10/12: National training in Klaipeda (LT)- Advanced
  8. 10/01: National training in Alvesta (SE)- Advanced
  9. 24/01: National training in Elbląg (PL)- Basic
  10. 28/01: National training in Nida (LT)- Basic
  11. 20/02: National training in Roskilde (DK)- Basic

All the material for the training are available on our Moodle platform here: https://umbrellainterreg.moodle.school/login/index.php

Simply register and use them for free!

Our Moodle is ready and filled with useful information on project management and available EU-funding opportunities! You can now use all the knowledge we have gathered for you within the Umbrella project framework and wish to share with all South Baltic beneficiaries.

We have a great course and handbook on project management prepared by the experts, that is free to use. You simply register and enjoy our coursebook, trainers book, presentations and much more.

Click here: https://umbrellainterreg.moodlecloud.com/login/index.php

Of course, we also invite you to our Project Management training sessions we are currently developing in Poland, Sweden, Denmark and Lithuania. Use this link to register: https://bit.ly/2IuFu7B

Thank you one more time for participating in our UMBRELLA project Cross-border Conference with PA panel “Future trends in ENERGY and ELECTROMOBILITY in the South Baltic Region”  on 25th Oct.

We had almost 50 experts from 6 BSR countries: Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, Denmark, Sweden and Russia. We are happy to share all the presentations for the event, including the contact details for the speakers. Soon we will share a short report from the electromobility micro activity on our website- www.umbrellaproject.eu and our social media –https://www.facebook.com/Umbrella.Interreg/

If you are interested in how can we help to improve your transnational activities within the UMBRELLA Interreg South Baltic project framework,  please let us know!

1.Umbrella PA Energy Gdańsk 25.10


3.Prezentacja_Raport energetyczny_23.10.2019_eng

4.Presentation Umbrella 2019 10 24

5.ESS Umbrella 25-10-2019


7.The transition of the power sector in north Poland

8.Fuel for energy trasition

9.UBIS 25 Oct


11.Biogas in Kalmar municipality Umbrella GDANSK

Euroregion Baltic together with European Solidarity Centre in the framework of “Connect Europe”, Europe for Citizens project organizes a full-day workshop with the debate on the solidarity and EU rights. Read more about our project here: www.eurights.org
This project aims to connect citizens and civil society representatives with the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights. The European values are threatened with increased populism and nationalism around Europe. We want to raise awareness about the EU charter and discuss our fundamental rights as citizens of the EU.

When: 3rd December 2019, 9.30-15.30
Venue: European Solidarity Centre, pI. Solidarności 1, 80-863 Gdańsk
The event will be held in English

Current agenda is attached below:

You can now register to the event using this link:

We have only a limited number of participants, due to the fact that we will visit the European Solidarity Centre exhibition together to learn about the solidarity to discuss its meaning in the European Union and beyond. So register ASAP and come meet youth and NGO representatives from 6 countries.

Euroregion Baltic



Prepared on 16th October 2019

Established in 1998 Euroregion Baltic (ERB), is a politically solid and well-anchored cross-border cooperation platform in the south-east of the Baltic Sea region, representing regional authorities  and associations of local authorities in nine regions in five countries. ERB is the first euroregion to have formally included a partner from Russia.

With reference to:

  • the Position Paper of Euroregion Baltic on the Future of Cohesion Policy after 2020, adopted on 18th September 2017
  • the Position Paper of Euroregion Baltic on the Future of the Interreg South Baltic Programme after 2020, adopted on 26th September 2018
  • presentation during the “The Baltic Sea/Arctic Area post-2020” round table discussion on 12th September 2019

Euroregion Baltic takes the following position:

  • ERB supports the continuation of the South Baltic Programme as a separate European Territorial Cooperation instrument, and therefore strongly opposes the European Commission’s proposal to merge the South Baltic Programme with the Central Baltic Programme.
  • ERB believes that the merger of the South Baltic Programme and Central Baltic Programme would result in creating another, in fact, transnationally oriented programme, as eight countries and the vast geographical area would be involved in this cooperation. From ERB’s perspective, this would no longer be the cross-border- programme in real terms.
  • ERB opposes the proposal of merging the Central Baltic Programme and South Baltic Programme, as Central Baltic Programme’s geographical coverage is more urban, with four state capitals and significant nationwide stakeholders involved, whereas the South Baltic Programme geography covers more rural/small and medium-sized towns areas, and the Programme itself is more peripheral. It means that the socio-economic challenges such as economic and innovative potential, demography, education and skills development, environmental issues, transport accessibility etc. would vary considerably in a newly merged programme. This would put the priority setting process at risk and make the new programme ineffective in addressing the specific cross-border needs of the area.
  • ERB supports the idea of bringing the EU closer to its citizens. We firmly believe that the South Baltic Programme needs to keep its cross-border character, and in result be able to come much closer to and involve the citizens at mostly local and regional level.
  • ERB believes that merging the two programmes will weaken the primary goal and most endorsed by ERB approach, which should be to address citizens needs in a most direct way possible. This could also disconnect significant players in South Baltic area  – such as local authorities and smaller NGO’s. ERB shares the view that local communities and institutions are more willing to engage in the cooperation on the sub-regional level than on transnational level.
  • ERB welcomes the European Commission’s proposal to establish small project funds within Interreg programmes but recommends that their budgets should not exceed 20% of the total programme allocation. The beneficiary of a small project fund shall be a cross-border organisation such as Euroregion, working together with hosting organisation, a legal entity, such as Association of Polish Communes Euroregion Baltic.  ERB recognises that such funds are the best instrument to implement people-to-people projects as they help in a straightforward and effective way to build up and maintain trust between people and regions in neighbouring states.

Vytautas Grubliauskas

President of Euroregion Baltic

See the signed document here:

The content of this website is the sole responsibility of the author and can in no way be taken to reflect the views of the European Union, the Managing Authority or the Joint Secretariat of the South Baltic Cross-border Cooperation Programme 2014-2020. The project UMBRELLA is partly financed from the Interreg South Baltic Programme 2014-2020 through the European Regional Development Fund.