Promotion of the Young Elite and Alumni Network

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Promoting the young, the possibly future elite of a country, as well as cooperating with the present-day elite represent one of the core missions of the international work of the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung (KAS) ever since its establishment in the 1960s. The Rule of Law Program South East Europe wishes to further pursue this mission. Its portfolio includes various successful national and regional projects focusing on young legal professionals and elites.

The Rule of Law Program South East Europe (RLP SEE) aims at supporting highly qualified young jurists coming from south-east European countries. In this context, the comprehensive program for young professionals entitled „Leaders for Justice“ addresses and empowers potential leaders of the Romanian legal system. The foundation of this program is the belief that in Romania – as well as in other transition countries – the construction and consolidation of a sustainable democracy may only succeed if its future elites develop an early understanding of the rule of law and of democracy and become aware of their – especially ethic – responsibility within the society. Therefore, this program does not focus on communicating technical and professional knowledge, but to confront the yearly up to 20 participants of the program with topics such as “humanity as core value of the justice system”, “law and moral”, “law and justice”, “human rights and the modern concept of justice”, “principles of professional ethics” etc.

Furthermore, the RLP SEE, in cooperation with Pravnik Association, a young NGO of jurists from Bosnia-Herzegovina, organizes since 2006 the Sarajevo International Summer School. The ISSS gathers yearly up to 30 graduates and young professionals from Europe, the United States of America and other countries of the world to discuss topics such as the role of the EU in the Balkan area, rule of law, democracy and human rights, post-conflict reconstruction, dealing with the past by legal means, regional cooperation etc. Every other five years, the ISSS alumni meeting takes place in Sarajevo.

Except for the mentioned programs for young jurists, the RLP SEE yearly supports and organizes different educational events (conferences, seminars, workshops, moot court competitions, round tables etc.), and publications that aim at promoting and training young professionals of south-east European countries.

These are only a few examples which show the commitment of the RLP SEE to support the young, future elites of their countries of origin and in the region. The interest with which these initiatives have been received both by the beneficiaries and the cooperating partners of the RLP SEE, as well as their proven success further demonstrate the need to develop similar and more specialized programs of this kind.