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General information about the Programme


Local Development Programme   

Cities, especially small and medium-sized, which are in more disadvantaged situation than large urban centres, are faced with a number of problems of economic, environmental, social or institutional nature. Complex and coordinated actions are needed, in order to, inter alia, improve quality of air, adapt to climate change, stop depopulation trends, respond to the needs of aging society, create good conditions for the development of entrepreneurship or sstrengthen efficiency of local governments. 
Residents expect that their cities will became friendly place to live and the Programme Local Development, financed under the 3rd Edition of EEA and Norway Grants 2014 – 2021, support local self-governments in achieving this objective. 

Strengthened social and economic cohesion through increase the standard of living of small and medium-sized town residents (including disadvantaged group) 

Programme Operator:
Ministry of Development Funds and Regional Policy 

Total Programme budget: 117,6 million € 
Including: Grant: 100 million €
National co-financing: 17,6 million  €

Value of subsidy:
selected projects will receive 3-10 million euro grants

Level of financing:
up to 100% of eligible costs 

small and medium-sized cities, qualified by Strategy for responsible development (SOR), which joined the ranks of 255 cities with most difficult socio-economic situation.         

List of eligible cities partnerships: 
due to the complex nature of the projects, inter-sectoral and inter-municipal partnerships (both domestic and international – with bodies from Donor States e.g. Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein) are possible and recommended. 

Nature of the projects:
complex development projects (infrastructural and soft), including efforts to strengthen/enhance capacity of local authorities, to achieve long term, integrated developmental goals of the city. 

Thematic scope of projects: 
projects shall include multifaceted and complementary actions.
It is recommended to take into account actions of many associated fields, in order to achieve synergy effect, having increased impact on local development of the respective city. As a minimum, projects shall be related to environmental, social, economic and institutional dimension. It is possible (but not mandatory), that projects shall be related also to issues such as spatial development, city financing, culture and intelligent city management. 

Environmental dimension e.g.: reduction of greenhouse gas emissionsadaptation to climate changereduction of city emissionsconversion from traditional to renewable energy sourcesenergy efficiencyinnovative solutions and eco-technologiesgreen and blue infrastructure investments city green areaslow-/zero-emission public transportother friendly for environment transport solutions, etc.; 

Social dimension, for instance: implementation of accessibility  standards according assumptions of the Programme Accessibility Plus 2018-2025 (mandatory) social policy taking into consideration marginalized city areas and groups of people threatened by social exclusionrealization of housing policy as a social and investment issue (inter alia universal design, balanced housing estates, housing innovations, municipality households management, construction societies for social housing (TBS), mechanisms of support of houses accessibility, social housing) promotion of social investments and innovations for development of local communities in poorer districts innovative solutions for support public participation shaping of public space, particularly the revitalization of degraded areas and development activities for public spaces to strengthen local social ties;reduction of unemployment and poverty improving education at different levelscreation of the network of local/regional public transport increased security of pedestrians and cyclists combating processes of suburbanization limitation of  economic migration from small and medium size cities to large urban centres realization of senior policy - tackling the challenges of aging population adjusting city offer to man’s life cycle and demographic changes taking place in this cycle stimulating animation projects aimed at children and young people development of services in the field of education and healthcare, etc. 

Economic dimension, for instance: support entrepreneurship and local economy support of innovativeness of local entrepreneurs strengthen local labour market, especially from the perspective of people entering/during adaptation to labour market association of the educational system with local labour market needs, etc.

ATTENTION: with exception of supporting creation or maintaining incubators/ centres of innovations/ entrepreneurship, which are excluded from support in the Programme. 

Eligible project actions:
All eligible project actions are intended to serve preparation, development and implementation of actions aimed at integrated and sustainable city development. For this purpose the projects will include Local Development Plan and Institutional Development Plan.

Examples of non-investment actions: 
Documentation: detailed sectoral strategies/ operational plans/ standards of city management and development/ analysis, research, expert opinions, evaluations/ public consultation plans/ strategies of public dialogue/ detailed cooperation plans/ assumptions for changes of studies of conditions and directions of spatial development and for changes of local spatial development plans/ feasibility studies; tender documents, concerning environmental impact assessment of a new venture;construction projects, Programmes, implementation actions, for instance: assuming social activation of groups at risk of exclusion/ support programmes for old and disable people/ programmes assuming vocational activation of the unemployed/ implementation of developed housing solutions/ programmes for children and youth/ programme of intelligent city development. Building institutional capacity and development of competences of local public authorities/ improvement and rise in standards of action of local self-governments/ increase citizens' confidence in public institutions at the level of local self-government. 

Investment actions:  resulting from diagnosis and analyses made at the 1st and 2nd stage of project enrollment/ with regard to the scope, contained in the Regulations of the call and project selection rules/  defined as a priority for realization project objectives and addressing the key problems of city development, with mandatory implementation of the accessibility standards according Programme Accessibility Plus 2018-2025. All planned investment expenditures shall not exceed 60% of total eligible costs in the project.

Scheme of preparation, selection and implementation of the project:
1st STAGE Calls addressed to 255 cities (selected in the “Strategy for responsible development” (SOR))Cities submit Project outline in response to call. Selection of approximately 50 cities 
2nd STAGE Phase – approximately 50 selected cities prepare Local Development Plan and Institutional Development Plan as components of Complete Project Proposal.Wide expert support in the frame of predefined project from Association of Polish Cities and Institute of Urban and Regional Development(IRMiR) in collaboration with Norwegian Association of Local and Regional Authorities (KS) and OECD. 2nd Phase – selection of approximately 15* projects (Complete Project Proposals) for funding.  
3rd STAGE Implementation of approximately 15* projects.Wide expert support in the frame of predefined project, in order to effectively perform prepared Plans by permanent city advisors and sectoral advisors, recruited when needed. Supervision of maintaining the main direction of the project and ensuring its factual accuracy. 

Projects must be carried out before April 30, 2024.

Details of a call and project selection rules you can find in the Regulations, which soon will be announced at the webpage of the Programme.


* The Programme Operator, together with the Project Selection Committee and the Donors States, decided to extend the ranking list to 29 cities due to the need to support more medium-sized cities in a post-pandemic situation.