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Organising the Czech Presidency of the Council of the EU – Lessons Learnt Radomír KARLÍK , Director Department of Logistics and Organisation ( September 2009 Department of Logistics and Organisation Section of the Presidency, Government Office

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Organising the Czech Presidency of the Council of the EU – Lessons Learnt

Radomír KARLÍK, Director

Department of Logistics and Organisation


September 2009

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Department of Logistics and Organisation Lessons Learnt

Section of the Presidency, Government Office

  • Direct management, not larger hierarchy

  • 22 administrators within 10 units (calendar, PCF, furniture and conference set-ups, technical support, hotels, catering, accreditation, interpretation, LOs, transport)

  • semi-independent management of PCF

  • 70 liaison officers

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Central Organisation Group Lessons Learnt

Main structure of ministerial coordination

  • Rather informal, without rigid institutional status

  • Ministerial representatives on the level of directors

  • Necessity to obtain sufficent coordinating authority

  • Spreading information, steering all the major organisation activities

  • Not a floor for a wider discussion

  • Rather a body of important feed-back

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Permanent Conference Facility Lessons Learnt

Congress Centre of Prague

  • Past experience (IMF 2000, NATO Summit 2002)

  • Advantage of logistical position (highway, hotels, out of the very centre of the capital)

  • Variety of conference premises

  • Single standard of Presidency events

  • Easy coordination of the ministries

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Ministerial Events in Regions Lessons Learnt

Government Decision in the mid of 2007

  • Out of 11 informal Councils (7 out of the capital)

  • In spite of the original political decision, in reality 14 informal Councils (5 in regions, 9 in Prague)

  • Appropriate premises, sufficient logistical back-up, transport (government aircraft)

  • Advantage: financial and organisational support of regional authorities

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Presidency Calendar Lessons Learnt

  • Backbone of the accreditation system and management of PCF, electronically based

  • All the Presidency events in the country

  • Access of the ministries for feedback

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Conference Set-ups Lessons Learnt

  • New furniture to suit the purpose, mobility

  • Architect solution for every venue and ministerial event

  • Close co-operation with the technical unit

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Technical Support Lessons Learnt

  • Interpretation, audio+video infrastructure, press centres

  • Communication within the Department (cell phones, walkie-talkie)

  • Most sophisticated, most expensive

  • Level of usual standards vs. cut off on the costs

  • New set-up of a base technical infrastructure (PCF, regions)

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Accomodation Lessons Learnt

  • Past Presidency experience: program changes, no show, cut-off on delegation numbers –) high penalty costs

  • Not direct booking, outsourcing to the agency

  • Decentralised responsibility for hotel bookings

  • No costs for the central co-ordinator

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Catering Lessons Learnt

  • Very individual approach, up to the hosting ministries to decide

  • Necessary matching to the accompanying program and gala dinner (ministerial responsibility)

  • Regional involvement

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Accreditation Lessons Learnt

  • Newly developed on-line, web-based accreditation system

  • Close co-operation with security authorities, direct access

  • On-line administration + call centre for last-minute changes

  • Database for other organisation activities: transport, accomodation, catering

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Interpretation Lessons Learnt

  • SCIC – DG Interpretation (summits + Informal Councils)

  • High SCIC standards (set-up, technical support) – early inspection visits, importance of close co-operation

  • Tendered Interpretation agency for working-level meetings

  • In-time thematical background papers from hosting ministries

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Transport Lessons Learnt

  • Sponsored car-fleet (limousines, minivans) – armoured cars for the summits

  • Buses for transport during accompanying social programs

  • Management by Police and Army – importance of related security provisions

  • Decentralized management by LOs, flexibility with respect to individual program changes