Civic/Participatory Budget in the Visegrad Group Countries in the Context of Good Practices | Maria Marczewska-Rytko, Dorota Maj
środa, 3 marca 2021
“Civic/Participatory Budget in the Visegrad Group Countries in the Context of Good Practices”, written by Maria Marczewska-Rytko and Dorota Maj, is the first book in the world that deals with the problem of comparing legal solutions and practical implementations of a civic budget in the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia (in the Visegrad Group countries). The book’s strong point is its interdisciplinary character. Who will gladly reach for it? Certainly a political scientist, because he/she will get a lot of information, for example, about trends in modern democracies or the possibilities of exercising citizen’s rights within the participatory budget. Lawyers will find many important things in this book – from the juridical foundations of constructing and functioning of the civic/participatory budget to the legal acts in the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia. They should pay special attention to the part four of the book as it collects legal acts in the national languages of given states. An important addressee of this book are employees of public administration, who, in the chapter on legal foundations, will find ready legal acts, which are the basis for the introduction of civic/participatory budget in the countries of the Visegrad Group. It is also an important study for historians. Historians interested in the history of ideas (the first chapter is the history of the idea of a civic/participatory budget); historians who specialise in the history of institutions, democracy or the history of contemporary politics in general. The sociologist will read this book with curiosity, for he/she will see how statistical differences divide the countries of the Visegrad Group in implementing the civic/participatory budget (especially in part three of the book). He/She will learn that in Poland and Slovakia interest in this form of participation was the earliest (it started10 years ago). He/She will gain knowledge that Poland is the most advanced country not only in legal terms but also in practical terms in implementing the civic/participatory budget. At the same time there is still a long way to go for Hungary to implement this concept. Specialists in international relations will read this book with interest. They will find out that the geopolitical closeness of the countries of the Visegrad Group does not translate into the same level of development of these countries when it comes to implementing the civic/participatory budget. Policy makers should also reach for this book to take advantage of the knowledge presented by the researchers. In this way, they can improve implementation of the civic/participatory budget concept important for democracy, and thus can de facto improve the quality of life of citizens in their countries. To sum up, the book is a compendium of theoretical and practical knowledge about the civic budget and forms of its implementation in the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia.
Jagiellonian University Professor Anna Citkowska-Kimla, Ph.D.