About PA Awards 2024

The third round of the Public Administration Awards in the Western Balkans aims to recognise initiatives that build better public administrations for and with users!

The Public Administration Awards in the Western Balkans is a unique awards system initiated by ReSPA and SIGMA to enhance governance initiatives and support establishing strong public governance systems in the Western Balkan region. 

With this initiative, we want to reward and promote best practices for enhancing capacities and enabling the rapid adoption of successful solutions for public administrations throughout the region. In short, we want to spotlight public administration endeavours that drive forward innovative, effective, inclusive, viable, and sustainable tools and systems contributing to the welfare of citizens.

Awards Objectives and Purpose

The Western Balkans Public Administration Award 2024 (WB PA Awards 2024) aims to identify, reward, and promote initiatives that set a standard of excellence, leading to enhanced public service delivery and an improved quality of life for citizens in the region.

We are searching for initiatives that benefit our community, crafted through collaborative efforts with citizens and businesses of the region, showcasing measurable outcomes, achievements, and improvements in public service delivery, all within the overarching framework of promoting good governance.

If your project embodies user-centricity while positively impacting citizens and businesses, do not miss this opportunity to showcase your success. Submit your application today and let your achievements shine on regional and international stages!


Awards Category

We are searching for initiatives that apply a judicious use of digital transformation, administrative simplification, innovation, inclusiveness, community impact and user engagement while demonstrating clear and tangible outcomes for users. Whether you have streamlined bureaucratic processes to reduce waiting times, introduced user-friendly digital platforms that increase accessibility, or empowered communities through participatory decision-making, your efforts are directly improving lives and shaping the future of governance.

The applications can come from a wide range of areas, policy sectors and fields of public governance as long as the focus is on demonstrating a direct or indirect positive impact on the users and contributing to the improvement of public service delivery (citizens, service users, targeted groups of beneficiaries, businesses and other stakeholders).

Regardless of the area of public administration and governance, we encourage initiatives that meet all or any of the following:

  • developed with users[1] or demonstrates understanding of user needs assessment (e.g. surveys, focus groups) or other methodologies that gather feedback from users and stakeholders to improve the services and adapt to evolving needs and preferences (e.g. participation in environmental protection);
  • involve citizens in decision-making processes, foster participatory democracy, and empower local communities to address their own needs (e.g. participatory budgeting);
  • adopt user-centred design approaches and usability testing in the development of services and solutions; promote citizen/stakeholder engagement and participation, securing inclusiveness (e.g. eParticipation platforms, personalised services in healthcare);
  • ensure that interfaces are intuitive, accessible, and tailored to the needs of diverse user groups, thus showing the lived experiences of individuals interacting with government services;
  • contribute to building transparency, integrity and accountability (e.g. use of open data) and cultivate trust and confidence among citizens (e.g. increased transparency in the fight against corruption);
  • allow informed choices through accessibility, improved exchange of information and facilitate effective communication between stakeholders;
  • reduce administrative burden and promote simplification as well as efficiency in administrative procedures (e.g. improved administrative procedures, enhanced accessibility, cost reduction);
  • promote online service delivery and digital transformation, i.e. secure that technology serves as a powerful enabler for improving public administration's relation with its users (e.g. digital platforms, secured digital identity solutions, the use of emerging technologies, data protection models);
  • ensure that interoperable systems and services adhere to the 'once only' principle, minimising the need for users to provide the same information across different platforms or interactions repeatedly (e.g. interoperability solutions);
  • ensure that the collection, storage and use of data comply with relevant privacy regulations and standards as well as allow data to scale up to serve larger populations or be replicated in other contexts or regions;
  • implement security measures to protect sensitive information and mitigate cybersecurity risks;
  • promote innovation, creativity and strategic foresight (such as projects based on science and innovation, projects developed in cooperation with academic and scientific organisations and private entities etc.);
  • promote collaboration and allow governments to tap into the collective wisdom and expertise of the community;
  • enable and implement collaborative platforms/projects, thereby fostering a sense of ownership and shared responsibility.

As a way to encourage diverse approaches and perspectives, the WB PA Awards 2024 will be particularly sensitive to and supportive of initiatives that have the following transversal (additional) aspects and aims:

  • promote green and sustainable measures (or services);
  • integrate a gender equality perspective;
  • initiatives for vulnerable and/or marginalised groups and citizens at risk of being disadvantaged;  
  • promote cross-border collaboration and community impact in the Western Balkans and beyond;
  • foster youth empowerment;
  • ensure stability/permanence in the functioning of public organisations in everchanging societal circumstances.

[1] The term "Users" refers to citizens, businesses, individuals, other public administrations or entities (e.g. CSOs) who interact with the specific system, project or service in question.

Rules & Eligibility Conditions CONTEST RULES DOWNLOAD

  • The ReSPA-SIGMA WB PA Awards 2024 invites applicants to submit impactful and result-oriented solutions contributing to the improvement of governance and public service delivery.
  • Applications should have been in place long enough (in implementation) to show substantial progress and results.
  • Applications must come from ReSPA members (Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Republic of North Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia) and Kosovo.* [1]
  • Each applicant can submit more than one application. All submissions must be made separately.
  • The application must be filled out completely with no text fields left empty. The organisers of the award reserve the right to ask applicants to provide any missing information.
  • Registration, including the submission of application, must be completed online via the ReSPA-SIGMA WB PA Awards contest platform.
  • In addition to the application form/questionnaire, each application can include (strongly recommended) supplementary documentation in relation to project implementation, outputs, outcomes and delivery, as well as other material the applicant deems relevant, incl. charts/tables/diagrams, video, audio, photos, links to websites and social media sites.
  • In submitting a project, the project-owners thereby accept the general contest rules of the ReSPA-SIGMA WB PA Awards 2024.
  • Submissions that violate international copyright provisions will be excluded.
  • The ReSPA-SIGMA PA Awards 2024 cannot be held liable for accepted submissions and their contents and rights.
  • Projects previously submitted for the WB PA Awards may be resubmitted provided that they have undergone noteworthy updates, adaptions and further development or have achieved significant impact and results which must be clearly demonstrated during the application, assessment and selection process.

* This designation is without prejudice to positions on status, and is in line with UNSCR 1244 and ICJ Advisory opinion on the Kosovo Declaration of independence

  • The ReSPA-SIGMA WB PA Awards 2024 is open to all public sector institutions[1] from all administrative levels, i.e. national, sub-national and local, in Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, North Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Kosovo* for initiatives predominately financed from public resources.
  • Applications can be submitted jointly i.e., by two or more applicants, including cross-regional and private entities, non-profit organisations and academic institutions, in which case a public administration entity must be designated as a lead. The award will only be given to the public administration organisation in such cases.
  • Consulting firms or other organisations offering consulting services are not eligible to apply.
  • Individuals who work in public administration and other natural persons are not eligible to apply both individually and as part of a joint application.

[1] This refers to all public administration entities regardles of their organizational structure and their position and role in the organization of public administration, at both national and any sub-national and/ or local level


PA 2024 Time table

  • A unique and exclusive package of awards is available for contestants, including trophies, certificates and special recognition for outstanding efforts, as well as peer learning activities and learning journeys that give insights into best practices in the European Union and the region.
  • The awards provide external visibility and international acknowledgement for public administrations in the Western Balkans, further leading to internal recognition and development possibilities, including the scaling up of their initiatives to other administrative and geographical areas.
  • Contestants will receive valuable feedback for project improvement thanks to the Awards' multi-step assessment process.
  • Submitted initiatives will be used in ReSPA's and SIGMA's learning exchange and practice transfer activities in the region and internationally.
  • Winners will join a Community of Inspirational Practices which represents 'club of excellency' with networking opportunities in the region and beyond.
  • The process of writing the application itself is a highly beneficial opportunity for learning and networking.
  • Participation in the WB PA Awards 2024 allows candidates to inspire each other with shared ideas, knowledge and exchange of best practices.


  • By submitting a project to the ReSPA-SIGMA PA Awards, the applicant provides the award organisers with the exploitation rights to any submitted videos, pictures and other content for non-commercial promotion of the nominated product presented in print, broadcast and any other forms of media, as well as for events.
  • The applicant must own the copyright of all pictures, sounds, contents and other materials related to their application. All software used must be licensed.


The official language of the contest is English and the application form must be filled out in English. The supporting materials should be in English (including press releases and news reporting, data analytics, visualisations, statistics and citizen feedback), if available. The supporting documents not available in English are addmissibile in a local language.  


  • Incomplete submissions and submissions that do not comply with the general contest rules and conditions will be withdrawn from the selection process. Applicants will be informed in a timely manner if their application is withdrawn from the selection process. There is no legal recourse against disqualification for any of the reasons outlined below.
  • Conditions leading to the immediate disqualification from the contest:
    • conflict of interest and non-adherence to the process by those concerned;
    • presentation of misleading and false information in supporting documents;
    • inability to provide sufficient documentation to review the initiative;
    • unethical behaviour, including undue pressure on any person involved in the evaluation and selection process;
    • lack of ownership of the creative rights or infringement of others' copyright;
    • false registration information or non-compliance with the rules of the contest.


The winners will be selected from a pool of applications received during the call for applications through the selection process described on the ReSPA website. For more information, see below.

Contact us

The Public Administration Awards team is happy to talk to you about any questions, feedback or propositions.

If you have any questions related to the rules of the contest, eligibility and other requirements or have any difficulties with the online registration and application tool please contact: pa-awards@respaweb.eu


1 The examples provided in these categories are not exhaustive and applications in other areas that have helped to improve the public administration domain are also welcome.

* This designation is without prejudice to positions on status, and is in line with UNSCR 1244 and ICJ Advisory opinion on the Kosovo Declaration of independence

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