In 2012, Ms. Udovicki’s mandate at the UNDP ended, and she returned to Serbia determined to reactivate and restructure CEVES’ operation, together with a group of economists, communications professionals, management consultants and development specialists (some earlier in CEVES and others new).
Reactivation of CEVES was grounded in a new approach, which focuses on the real economy and activism, and its goal is to dedicate as much effort to advocacy, capacity-building and mobilization as it does to research. Restructuring of CEVES’ activities and formulation of a new mission was inspired by the growing need for a response to the deteriorating living conditions, which threaten to jeopardize Serbia’s democratic consolidation.
Considering this shift to a more activist approach, which will seek to translate policy recommendations into various languages accessible to different stakeholders (policymakers, civil society organizations, business associations, local communities, and the public), CEVES will benefit from both the enhanced experience of its earlier team members, and a new group of young, enthusiastic professionals who have shown commitment to producing concrete changes in the socio-economic policy space.
Furthermore, CEVES has a strong track-record in building its staff capacity, with a particular focus on the junior economists (this is best demonstrated in the professional development of individuals who were once employed in CEVES and the positions they’ve held since). Thus, CEVES plans to use the experience it has gained in this respect, and ensure that all top professionals pass on their knowledge to the junior staff, and in that way contribute not only to the in-house capacity but also to the overall skill-enhancement much needed in Serbia.