National strategic documents should be based on residents’ consensus regarding their current state and future opportunities being as much as possible based on realistic understanding of their strengths and weaknesses to be able to realistically plan for the future.
Luckily Slovenia implemented a strong process defining the brand of Slovenia some years ago being later formulated as I feel Slovenia which is less important than messages being incorporated in a whole brand and its background. They tell who we are and what are we able to do in the future.
The Story of Slovenia is based on some facts from being enthusiastic towards everything we enjoy to being different and being oriented towards our vision: green boutiqueness to be delivered through mission oriented towards development with nature. The band is being very clear on Slovenians: we are society of individuals with common goals, we wish to contribute and we want to live in a safe state because we respect diversity where society’s quality of life depends on the individual’s balance. In economic terms we do understand that we need to be focused on niches while organic development is a denominator of
our prosperity. Slovenia is a tourist destination with diversity based on desires while green is the color of people and their environment. Culture is our value while everybody is an artist while our interests and proximity are keys to science. Movement towards natural limits is in us in sports but is spread in all areas we live and work in. (Full document can be found here.)
Some could argue that all of these are just words but if you really look to us internally and if you really take time to explore our inner circles and the society we live in you will find answers very similar to what the brand says.
So while preparing the National Development Plan we have a rather simple work to be done while we should be careful of two important points:
- Strategic planning process is a knowledge process not a document preparation. In order to be successful State will need to create large learning loop in order to get people understand their inner circle and our basic starting points this will help institutions and people get on. By developing knowledge on who we really are and how can we really be successful will give us a momentum to change borders in our heads. The logic of me being stupid and you being the most smart one will be turned to how can we function in the global market where only the best can survive.
- Strategic planning is successful if it supports what you are and what you able to achieve. Strategic documents must be developed to support all of us to be what we are and support us in opportunities we have. By developing measures which support what we are not is damaging our future and our opportunities. Measures need to be in line with simple facts lied down in the Story of Slovenia not in some socio-economic analysis without understanding a context of data and analysis collected.
European union is asking us to understand our smart specialization in order to be able to use scares development resources more focused and concentrated and in order to get our priorities straight. Well easy task for us, we know it, our priority is: Getting people busy. Very busy.
Smart specialization sectors for next planning period may be seen as:
- Further support to tourism.
- Entrepreneurship and innovation in strong coordination with art, culture and sport to use our creativeness for personal and entrepreneurial growth and science.
- Mobilization of government to govern and enable growth.
This offers a list of potential packages of measures for the National Development Plan:
- Spatial efficiency and polycentric development (being focused to spatial, agriculture and rural, environmental and transport, regional and local development type policies).
- Knowledge loop (being focused to social, education, administration, innovation type policies).
- Cooperated entrepreneurship and innovation (being focused to business, education, administration, innovation, rural and agricultural type policies).
- Public private partnership to employ the national capital (being focused to administration, education, financial and monetary type policies).