Vytautas Naudužas



European and European Union institutions

Amanda Paul

Foreign and security policy analyst, European Policy Center. Areas of expertise include Turkish foreign, security and domestic policy; security and conflict resolution in the Black Sea/Eurasia region, Russian foreign policy in the former Soviet space and EU foreign policy in its Eastern neighbourhood. Presently employed as a Senior Policy Analyst at the EPC,responsible for managing EPC projects related to Turkey; the EU Eastern Neighbourhood and Caspian region; the Middle East and Gulf region and Jihadist radicalisation. Associate Senior Research Fellow at the International Centre for Policy Studies in Kyiv, Ukraine, where contributes to research and projects related to Ukraine and the broader region. Previously worked at the Brussels based think-tank, Centre for European Policy Studies (CEPS), and Türk Henkel in Istanbul. Experienced journalist and columnist, writing on issues related to Turkey, Russian Foreign Policy,Eurasia region, broadly published in academic journals and other publications.

Frédéric Vallier

Secretary General of the Council of European Municipalities and Regions (CEMR) since 2010. Expert in European and international affairs at the local and regional levels and city diplomacy, has over 25 years of experience working with local and regional authorities. As Secretary General of CEMR, campaigns for the full recognition of local and regional governments as strategic partners of the European project and calls for a Europe closer to its citizens and their first levels of democracy. Also represents European local governments in the Global Task Force of Local and Regional Governments, and United Cities and Local Governments, and to the United Nations. Member of the Multi-Stakeholder Platform of the European Commission on the Implementation of the SDGs in the EU. Holds an Executive Master’s Degree in public management from Science Po Paris.

Julia Dzingailo

Regional Coordinator/Communications Manager with the “Mayors for Economic Growth” Secretariat, based in Tbilisi, Georgia. MA in Diplomacy and International Сommerce from the University of Kentucky, USA. Has the total of 13 years of Programme/Portfolio management experience within the UN system and donor agencies (IOM, UNDP, USAID), as well as expert work experience with international technical assistance projects in the area of local/regional development in Belarus and countries of the Eastern Partnership.

Peter R. Korsby

Team Leader/Project Manager of the EU “Mayors for Economic Growth” Initiative, implemented in the 6 Eastern Partnership countries. Former Director of the Region of North Denmark. Has 16 years of experience leading international technical assistance projects (mostly funded by the EU) in Eastern European countries (Ukraine, Belarus, Russia, Armenia, Moldova, Georgia etc.), Baltics (Latvia, Estonia), and profound experience in the public administration bodies of Denmark at both national and regional/local level, as well as with the private sector (consultancy business). Holds a Master’s degree in Eastern European Studies and a Master of Public Administration. Author of a large number of publications, articles and conference papers on administrative reforms and on regional and local development.

Hoa Binh Adjemian

Head of Sector, Economic Development - Eastern Partnership Countries, European Commission (DG NEAR. Previously was the Head of Cooperation for the EU Delegation to Armenia, and Head of Infrastructure Section in Benin. Has an extensive experience in public private partnerships in Asia, and lately managed the operation of Veolia Water in Korea. Graduated from Harvard Kennedy School of Government with a Master of Public Policy and l’Ecole Polythechnique and l’Ecole des Ponts et Chaussées in Paris with a M.Sc and M.Eng

Marlène Siméon

Director of PLATFORMA, the European voice of local and regional governments and their associations active in decentralised cooperation and is a member of the Global Task Force of Local and Regional Governments recognised by the United Nations. Before joining PLATFORMA, worked as policy adviser at the Council of European Municipalities and Regions (CEMR), been in charge of cohesion policy and territorial development, the Urban Agenda for the EU, the 2030-Agenda and its Sustainable Development Goals, and the (global) New Urban Agenda. Previously represented the Provence-Alpes Côte d’Azur Region to the EU institutions in Brussels, focusing primarily on decentralised cooperation. Holds PhD in international economics and urban policies and has been working for over 9 years on territorial development. Specialised in the areas of development cooperation, socio-economic and territorial cohesion and development, mobility and local finances. Has several publications in relation to local and regional governments to her credit.

Dr. Nigel Jollands

has worked on sustainable energy and environmental policy for 25 years. In 2011 took up a post with the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and now is Associate Director, Policy Products Unit in the Energy Efficiency and Climate Change Department, works at the interface between policy and finance, supporting the Bank’s green investment programme through policy dialogue with the governments in the Central and Eastern Europe, Central Asia, and North Africa. Co-leads the development of the Bank’s Green Cities Framework. Prior spent 5 years as the Head of Energy Efficiency Unit at the International Energy Agency, where led the IEA policy analysis, co-ordinating the IEA Energy Efficiency Working Party, liaising with multilateral efficiency initiatives including the G8. Previous positions include Principal Ecological Economist in the New Zealand Centre for Ecological Economics (NZCEE), Senior Lecturer at Massey University, and senior policy analyst in New Zealand’s capital at various Ministries. Regular presenter at international conferences, has published numerous journal articles and contributed to many books in the area of resource efficiency and ecological economics.


Project Officer of the Eastern Partnership activities in PLATFORMA. Has 8 years experience in EU affairs, focus in European local governance and Eastern European societies and politics. Coordinates the PLATFORMA awards, the European prize of excellence in decentralised cooperation. Graduated from the Université Libre de Bruxelles (Belgium) in political science: MA in “Central and Eastern European Politics and Societies”, and from the Université de Haute-Bretagne (France) in economics, international trade and languages (English and Russian).


Vytautas Naudužas

Moderator of the Conference

Ambassador-at-Large in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania. He served as Lithuanian Ambassador to Sweden, Turkey, Iran, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Kirghizia, many years has worked in France. Also served as the Adviser of Prime Minister of Lithuania and Deputy Minister in the Ministry of Economy of Lithuania. Doctor of social sciences. Regular presenter at international conferences, focusing on economics, energy and transport policy, has published a number of articles in economics and demography.

Elena Archipovaitė

Coordinator of Lithuanian General Plan–2030, Ministry of Environment (Lithuania). The last 14 years worked in architecture and urban development fields. Since 2005 took part in various international projects in Portugal, Norway, Uganda, Kenya, Brazil, India, Ukraine and Lebanon. All the projects implemented were related to coordinating of urban strategies involving the population and other stakeholders in planning and decision-making processes, where she coordinated the social housing issues, initiated trainings for experts, worked as trainer. Experience in cooperation with many international organizations, cities’ development agencies and research centres like UN-Habitat Nairobi, Lebanon; UN-UNI network; Makerere University, Uganda; Ministry of Land Housing and Urban development, Uganda; Slum Dwellers International; ACTogether Uganda; Project for Public Space (PPS); Engineer Without Borders, Urban Studies School CANactions, Ukraine; USAID; Norwegian University Science and Technology.

Vaida Aleknaviciene

Deputy Mayor of Joniškis Municipality (Lithuania). Coordinates education, social, business, youth and culture fields. Represents municipality in the Steering Committee of the European Cross Border Cooperation Programme, various international initiatives. Also represents the Association of Local Authorities in Lithuania in PLATFORMA, and the Coalition of Local and Regional Governments and their Associations working in development cooperation. Active in social activities, on voluntary basis acts as the dean and lecturer of the Joniškis University of the Third Age, Chairman of Local Action Group of Joniškis City, President of the Joniškis’ Rotary Club.

Dovydas Kaminskas

Mayor of Tauragė District Municipality and the youngest mayor in Lithuania. In 2015-2019 worked as Mayor’s advisor in Tauragė Municipality. Bachelor degree in Laws and Master degree in International Law. Active member of community and takes part in various social activities like youth organization “Tauragės apskritas stalas”, non-profit organization “Lietuvos šaulių sąjunga” and the Union of Baltic Cities. Works also as a lecturer and gives inspiration and motivation speeches for youths. In 2017 nominated for the Global Lithuanian Awards and won a prize for the international experience for Lithuanian regions.


Director of Vilnius municipal company „Susisiekimo paslaugos”(„Vilnius transport”) (Lithuania). Profound experience in the transport sector. Currently Head of the company that is actively involved in the implementation of strategic documents and sustainable mobility plan approved by the Vilnius City Municipality and contributes to the development of a sustainable transport system in Vilnius. Together with the team seeks to achieve Vilnius transport system would be convenient for citizens and city’s guests, and everyone would have possibility to choose the best and the most suitable way of travelling without any economic, social, technical or physical restrictions.

Sigitas Leonavičius

President of Vilnius Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Crafts (Lithuania). Active Chamber member since 1997. Head of the Association of Alytus Region in the Lithuanian Confederation of Industrialists, Member of the Lithuanian Engineering Industry Association “Linpra”, Member of Alytus City Council (since 2015), Chairman of the Council of Vilnius Gediminas Technical University (since 2011), Chairman of Lithuanian-Ukrainian Business’s Council (since 2015), Vice President of “Hanza Parliament” , Chairman of the Board of Company “TRAIDENIS”.

Gitana Grigaitytė

Ambassador-at-Large in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania. Since 2017, coordinates the cooperation of Lithuanian MFA with municipalities of Lithuania, with the aim to ensure the synergy between country‘s foreign and regional policies. Encourages Lithuanian municipalities to participate in the Development Cooperation programmes, to liaise with the partners of EU and Eastern Partnership countries, works out with municipalities on the issues of historical memory in the places significant internationally. In 2018, along with the Association of Local Authorities in Lithuania, has organised the international conference „Gender Mainstreaming in Municipalities: Sharing of the Nordic Experience“ (October 4-5, 2018, Kaunas). Between 2009 and 2016 was a Director of the Economic Security Policy Department of MFA, been in charge with energy security, transport policy, environment issues. Previous positions include: in 2007-2009 - a Deputy Director of this Department; also has worked in Lithuanian Embassy to the United Kingdom, headed the MFA Division of International Economic Organisations where coordinated Lithuanian accession to the World Trade Organisation, Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), worked with a number of regional organisations as CBSS, Nordic Dimension, EU Baltic Sea Regional Strategy, etc.

Tadeuš Andžejevski

Member of the Council of Vilnius District Municipality (Lithuania), member of the Lithuanian delegation to the Committee of the Regions. Studied at the Higher School of Civil Aviation in Kirovograd, Ukraine, acquired the speciality of engineering navigator. Holds a Master's Degree in History from the University of Warsaw. Continued studies in Germany at Mainz University and Herder Institute, since 1996 works in the weekly “Nasza Gazeta”. As an editor, coordinates a policy section, writes articles on self-government, minorities and historical topics. In 2006-2008 was an assistant to the Prime Minister of Lithuania. Currently works as an assistant to a Member of Lithuanian Parliament.


Andris Ločmanis

Senior Spatial Development Planner – GIS Expert at the Riga City Municipality (Latvia), working since 2003, and former lecturer at the University of Latvia, Faculty of Geography and Earth Sciences. Has been involved in elaboration of the Riga Sustainable Development Strategy until 2030, Riga Masterplan 2005-2018 and Riga Masterplan until 2030, as well as in development of the Neighbourhood Platform for Spatial Monitoring and in rising Riga city residents’ sense of belonging to their neighbourhood. As an expert has taken part in the implementation of several EU-funded projects within the fields of urban planning, environment, climate, etc.


Ion Carpineanu

Mayor of Cărpineni Municipality (Hâncești District, Moldova) from 2010 (reelected in 2011, 2015). Has initiated and implemented various development projects in the community (economic development, water and sanitation, waste management, energy efficiency, social services etc.). In recent years actively promotes economic development initiatives to improve the business environment at the local level. Since 2017 the community is member of the EU Initiative M4EG. Holds Bachelor degree in engineering and courses in public administration. Participated in various exchange programs and forums in European countries. Has experience in entrepreneurship.

Alexandru Osadci

Coordinator of international relations in the Congress of Local Authorities from Moldova (CALM). Expert in local government, public administration, decentralization, local autonomy, governance, advocacy and communication, democracy, elections, human rights, regional development, economic and fiscal policy, public finance management, European Union and European integration, aid management and coordination. Most part of the career he was working in donors coordination (central government, EU, UN, etc.). Since 2010 started his career in CALM.


Archil Gogsadze

Mayor of Baghdati Municipality (Georgia) since 2016 (with 31 towns and 21.6 thous population). Former Director of the World Bank project „Cultural Heritage Protection“. Has 20 years of experience in leading different high national importance monuments protection, restoration and management projects in the different regions of Georgia such as the capital, historical towns, high mountain regions. Holds a Master’s degree in Economy.

Tamar Taliashvili

Majoritarian Member of Tbilisi City Assembly, the Head of the Commission on Culture and Education, Vice-President of Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe and Vice-President of the National Association of Local Authorities of Georgia. Has carried out scientific research activities at Max-Planck Institute for Intellectual Property Law. During the study period has received multiple awards and grants, including Max-Planck society grant, the award of the President of Georgia and the Ilia Chavchavadze first-grade grant. All of this gave the opportunity to continue studies at Aarhus Universitat, Denmark, at Universitat des Saarlandes, Germany and Europa Institute. Scientific works and research papers were published in Georgia, Germany and Russia. In 2011 was nominated for the US State Secretary Award – ‘’Women in Public Service’’.

David Melua

Executive Director of the National Association of Local Authorities of Georgia (NALAG). Internationally recognised expert on local self-government and regional development. Has served as a consultant for a number of international organisations. Was a member of the Group of Independent Experts of the Council of Europe, and also worked for the Geneva Institute for International Studies on an analysis of decentralisation and local development in Georgia. Provides consultancy to the government of Georgia on decentralization, local development and local governance, serves as a key expert for regional development policy support program implemented by the Ministry for Regional Development and Infrastructure of Georgia. Has designed and managed up to 10 large scale projects on decentralization, regional development, local development and cross-border cooperation. Was a member to the State Commission on decentralisation and effective governance system in Georgia and played a key role in the development of the new law on local self-government. Author of a numerous articles and publications on regional development, local economic development and decentralisation.


Yuri Fomichev

Mayor of Slavutych City (Ukraine) from 2015. Master’s degree of Management and Business and a Master of Public Administration. Has 14 years of successful business management experience in communal, engineering and construction spheres. Was a deputy of the City Council since 2006,headed the Commission on “Municipal reform, reforming of housing and communal services, communal property and tariff policy”. Member of Supervisory Board and co-founder of city public organization “Union of Manufacturers and Employers in the Field of Communal Services”. Participated in the preparation of Local economic development plan and other projects for the development of Slavutych region. Coordinates EU initiatives: “Mayors for Climate and Energy” and “Mayors for Economic Growth”, EU Grant projects for Slavutych. Has Certificates of Honor of: the State Committee of Ukraine “On Housing and Communal Services”, the State Committee of Ukraine on Regulatory Policy and Entrepreneurship, the Ministry of Housing and Communal Services of Ukraine, the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine on Industry and Regulatory Policy and Entrepreneurship.

Oleksandr Slobozhan

Executive Director of all Ukrainian Associations of Local Governments “Association of Ukrainian Cities”, PhD in local self-governance. Expert in fiscal decentralization and government budgeting. As AUC Executive Director defends legal rights and interests of cities, towns, amalgamated communities, villages and settlements, advocating on their behalf to national authorities, and informing central and regional authorities about problems and challenges of local self-governments.


Tadej Beocanin

Mayor of Ajdovščina Municipality (Slovenia) (reelected in 2018). Leads the municipality with youthful enthusiasm, perhaps even boldly, but at the same time prudently, with broad outlook and experiences that was gained through his comprehensive activities in youth and sports organizations and societies. Consistently fulfilling the pre-election programme with the emphasis on job creation, listening to the problems of the young generation and the municipality’s polycentric development. With the formation of a programme coalition, he goes beyond political divisions and is susceptible to new ideas and initiatives. The idea of direct democracy is also being implemented through the introduction of the participatory budget - his initiative project is thus the first example of the participatory budget in Slovenia.


Jean-Yves Camus

Political adviser at the International Relations Department, City of Paris (France), in charge of cities networks and relations with Central and Eastern European countries, along with countries from the former CIS. Member of the Inter-ministerial academic board for the fight against racism, anti-Semitism and anti-LGBT hatred, associated to the Prime-Minister office. In academic career has worked with the Institute for European, Russian, and Eurasian Studies (IERES), the Elliott School of International Affairs and the George Washington University (Washington, D.C).


Javier Sánchez Cano

Has occupied different positions in the local and regional administrations, n the fields of external relations and development. Since 2012 Head of the Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation Area, DG Development Cooperation, Generalitat (Region) de Catalunya. Has been the Director of the European Center of the Regions, European Institute of Public Administration (EIPA-ECR) (2008-2011), Director of EU Policies Secretariat of the Generalitat de Catalunya (2005-2008). Served as Secretary-General of the Ibero-American Center for Urban Strategic Development (CIDEU), and advisor to the Barcelona City Council (2001-2004). Author of numerous publications on international security, development and international organisations. Current research deals with local authorities in the international system. Obtained PhD in Political Science in 2016 with a thesis "Non-central governments and their networks: analysis of their role as actors in global governance". Associate researcher at the Autonomous University of Barcelona. Between 1992 and 2001, was a lecturer at the School of Politics and Sociology of the same university and at the Cidob Foundation.


Alesia Karnachova

The Local Economic Development Officer of Polotsk District Executive Committee (Republic of Belarus) for the EU project “Mayors for Economic Growth”. Has more than 10 years of experience in public administration. Currently heading the Economic Department of Polotsk District Executive Committee, competencies cover a wide range of sustainable local economic development issues, including promoting investment and marketing of the district, facilitating the Public-Private Dialogue, consultations on business and entrepreneurship development, as well as job creation.


Hasmik Ghonyan

Head of the Division of Economic Development and External Relations, Municipality of Kapan (Armenia). Has 12 years of experience in the Municipality of Kapan. In the framework of the EU ”Mayors for Economic Growth” developed ,,Local Economic Development Plan of Kapan”, which was reviewed by the World Bank and considered in the line with the principles of the M4EG Initiative. Member of Local Economic Development Officer’s Team established by GIZ with the cooperation of Ministry of Territorial Administration and Development of Armenia and took part in the training at the Hague Academy for Local Governance with the support of GIZ. Member of the Community Committee responsible for the Community`s 5 year development plan, annual work plan,coordinates the process of these plans development. Takes part in the various Community development projects and coordinates the work with private sector, NGOs and international organizations.


Karlien Gorissen

Advisor of the International Department of the Association of Flemish Cities and Municipalities (VVSG) (Belgija). Supports decentralized cooperation and has piloted the integration of the Sustainable Development Goals on the local level in Flanders. VVSG and the Flemish municipalities are frontrunners in localizing the SDGs in Belgium.


Arne Ingebrigtsen

Chief Municipal Executive in the City of Kristiansund (Norway). Previously an entrepreneur from the private sector with awards in Europe Fast 500 and several Norwegian awards. Now innovating the Norwegian public sector. Has established the first municipal Masterplan in Norway based on the UN SDGs. Kristiansund won the DOGA service design award, the Farmand prize and several others after innovating the city’s services under his leadership. His expertise lies in the area where technology meets its beneficiary.


Jessie Post

Policy advisor at the International Cooperation Agency of the Association of Netherlands Municipalities, VNG International. Has vast experience in project management in Sub Saharan Africa. In current position represents both VNG and VNG International in international networks (UCLG, PLATFORMA) and advices Dutch Mayors and municipalities on international activities. Also coordinates the secretariat of UCLG’s Capacity and Institution Building Working Group. Holds a bachelor degree in Public Administration and Master's degree in European Policy.


Participation is free


Forum of EU-EaP Local Leaders
24th-25th October, 2019 Vilnius, Lithuania