23 Sep 2014
We are pleased to welcome our first Croatian cities to the Global Compact. The historic cities of Pula and Dubrovnik have respectively made the commitment to the ten principles of the Global Compact.
Pula and Dubrovnik share rich histories and are renowned for their well-preserved heritage sites. Together, they are two of the Mediterranean’s most popular tourist destinations. The City of Pula is a three thousand year old city, rich in history and numerous archaeological finds. Its history begins with the Romans, and it is perhaps best known for its Amphitheatre – the Arena. Dubrovnik’s history dates back to the Byzantine Empire and as a leading Mediterranean city, over the centuries it has been the site of many wars with potential conquerors; the Saracens; Bulgaro-Macedonians and Serbs. After the Crusades, Dubrovnik came under the sovereignty of Venice (1205-1358), and by the Peace Treaty of Zadar in 1358 it became part of the Hungarian-Croatian Kingdom.
The commitments of Dubrovnik and Pula reflect the important role of Global Compact Local Networks in city engagement and bringing city administration and the business sector together for societal improvement. Both Pula and Dubrovnik’s commitments were facilitated by the Croatian Global Compact Local Network. There are hopes that Croatia’s capital, Zagreb will soon join them.
Contact Point of the Croatian Local Network, Nataša Novaković explained a little about the Network’s core work; “the focus of the (network’s) activities is to improve the practise and business policies in the area of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) as well as lobby for positive changes”. Nataša also holds the position of Legal Advisor to the Director of the Croatian Employers Association. The Association has managed the Croatian Local Network since late 2012.
The Croatian Local Network has focused recently on the position of women in economic decision-making processes. This is in cooperation with the Ombudswoman for Equality of Sex and is being implemented through an EU Progress Project. The Croatian Global Compact Local Network are also partnering with UNICEF to assess the level of child rights in business and management.
An important role for both the Local Networks and the Cities Programme is the dissemination of knowledge and sharing good practice. Both cities have contributed to the latest volume of the Cities Programme publication, ‘Sustainable Cities’. The stated aim of the City of Pula is to responsibly provide its citizens desirable services while promoting and optimizing the finest quality of life, to provide outstanding services that meet the community needs and govern responsibly by effectively managing and protecting public resources. Efforts to achieve these goals will be featured in ‘Sustainable Cities’ in which the city’s new comprehensive e-business system is outlined.
The City of Dubrovnik has also contributed a case study, which highlights the impacts of tourism on the daily life of the city’s population and the influence it has had on where residents live and how they earn their livelihood. The article captures the multiple dimensions of tourism and economic growth and outlines strategies that the city has undertaken to revitalise depressed sections of the city’s Old Town and attract families to return to what had formerly been thriving community hubs.