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Jan Truszczynski's Workshop: Why reporting to the EU counts for Ukraine's European Integration

We tend to consider reporting being rather complicated process that takes a lot of time and energy. Departments and ministries the negotiate on the international level face with it the most. Reports are constantly rewritten, adjustments are made, and in the end we call these processes as Lost In Translation. However, international misunderstandings can be largely avoided if the approach to the process of reporting is correct.

On October 21, 2016 Mr. Jan Truszczynski held a workshop Useful Reporting as an instrument facilitating the implementation of the Association Agreement with the EU for experts of the EU-funded project Association4U and for communicators of Ukrainian ministries. Mr. Truszczynski like no other knows the problems, obstacles and specifics of negotiations with the European Union. A diplomat used to be an advisor of the Polish president on issues concerning European Integration, then he was a government authority in negotiations of Poland's accession to the EU, State Secretary of the Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and later - senior officer of the European Commission. And now he shared his experience about proper reporting and explained its rules to Ukrainians.

"There are 28 countries in the European Union, few are working on eurointegration. Imagine how many queries and reports come to Brussels every day, each of ones should not only been read, but also give understanding on what level of solution a particular country is, does it fit the deadline or whether it has received the first results", - started his speech Mr. Jan Truszczynski.

The main purpose of reporting in the framework  of international cooperation - is evaluation of assignments, work and so on by responsible persons . Reporting has to provide answers to the following questions:

  • Ÿ what has been done?
  • Ÿ whether enough is done within the deadline?
  • Ÿ do the achievements and results justify money that were spent?
  • Ÿ progress in general?
  • Ÿwhat risks/challenges are waiting ahead?

The better  answers on these questions will be disclosed, the more objective and transparent assessment will be formed by authorized people.

Mr Jan Truszczynski claimed, that proper and regular reporting is useful not only for stakeholders of the project, but for most line ministries and departments as well. First of all, the report will make it clear whether the movement goes right through the project.

Moreover, the report informs the publicity (informing audience is one of the main tasks of every communicator). Eventually, the reporting - is a proof of done work, some achievements and trust.

What is needed to write a proper report?

Firstly, to identify specific target and deadline of separate processe, careful approach to the process of all involved parties, the use of standardized reporting formats among the central government and agreed procedure for processing the conclusions and recommendations of reports.

Standardized report has to contain the following elements:

-       description of final and interim targets as set out in the Association Agreement, description of tasks

-       definition of key ministries

-       status of legislative approximation (the main question: At what point are we now?)

-       if there is a delay in a process, explanation of causes and measures to improve the situation

-       cost estimates for tasks

And the most important - every such report, for each priority fixed in Action Plan and in implementation plans, it should be worked by coordinating body at the political level and be handled by coordination body at political level, included in the general annual activity report on AA (the line ministries, from their side, should provide such reports quarterly).

In addition, Mr. Truszczynski advised to approach each event gradually, allowing to improve the quality of work, which is divided into segments.

An essential addition is the IT-tools - to support collection. Processing and integration of data related to AA implementation activities are a necessary complement and their use until now is too limited in UA in the AA-context. There were attempts to develop such tools in the past, another one is underway and possibly soon to be applied. In Polish and other EU experience, it helped the overall efficiency, said Mr. Jan Truszczynski.

Finally, diplomat pointed out the importance of the Roadmap of responsibilities and tasks. This Roadmap not only gives extended explanations of many terms and solutions, but also allows to change a strategy  if previous one was wrong.




by Oksana Shamonova, Associate Communication Fellow