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HELVETAS Swiss Intercooperation partnered with the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) to facilitate an inclusive and green economic development program in the Eastern Partnership and the Western Balkan regions. The name of the program, RECONOMY, stands for ‘starting afresh’, revitalizing the transitioning economies in the two regions.

The core of RECONOMY is using current knowledge and practices and encouraging learning and sharing between countries. The program accomplishes this by involving a variety of stakeholders, including public institutions, nonprofits, academia, and businesses. While doing so, the program focuses on common issues that countries of both regions face as well as shared actors that may step up and support systemic improvements.

Since RECONOMY acknowledges that people live in countries, not regions, the program looks at local-regional processes and relationships. Without a place-sensitive frame of view, development efforts that ignore these facts frequently fall short.

RECONOMY places a high priority on the “triple dividend,” or the addition of

Social, Economic and Environmental values.

Main Goal

To enable women and youth, including the most disadvantaged and excluded, to benefit from economic opportunities by increasing their income and taking up decent and green jobs, inclusively and sustainably.

To achieve the main goal, RECONOMY works along three workstreams:

Services

When businesses embrace the new or better services facilitated by RECONOMY, it is expected that their investment and growth would increase as a result, making the private sector more competitive. These changes on the demand side, however, are insufficient.

Competencies

Competencies of the labor force are required, as is the ability to join companies or launch one's own economic endeavors. These come from inclusive, affordable, and demand-driven skills and intermediation services and support systems, leading to the employability and mobility of women and youth.

Influences

Further, businesses benefit from an enabling environment that is tailored to their industry or company, as it influences their productivity and spurs them to do business in a better way.

Our Team

The members of our program facilitation unit are spread across the Eastern Partnership and the Western Balkan regions.

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Alexander Gogoberidze

RECONOMY Core Team

Regional Manager Eastern Partnership

Alexander Gogoberidze is Regional Manager for the Eastern Partnership countries at RECONOMY. He is an economic development practitioner with extensive experience in market systems and value chain development. Before joining development cooperation, he worked in private sector development while with the Georgian Chamber of Commerce and Industry and SME Development Agency.

Ana Latsabidze

Eastern Partnership Team

Program Officer Eastern Partnership

Ana Latsabidze is the Program Officer for Eastern Partnership (EaP) countries at RECONOMY. Her prior experience includes working for international organizations and the private sector, as well as leading large-scale initiatives in cooperation with UNDP, EU, GIZ, USAID, and the Embassy of Netherlands. Ana also has experience working on the creation of innovative strategies and programs that encourage the inclusion of women in the SME sector throughout Georgia.

Anastasia Bekish

RECONOMY Core Team

Environment & Climate Change Manager

Anastasia Bekish is the Environment and Climate Change Manager at RECONOMY. She a professional in the field of climate policy, civil society development, and project management with 10-years’ experience in non-profit organizations in Belarus and Eastern Europe, Caucasus, and Central Asia region.

Bojana Mumin

Western Balkan Team

Program Officer Western Balkans

Bojana Mumin is the Program Officer for the Western Balkans at RECONOMY. She is experienced and skilled international development professional with 16 years in program management, monitoring, policy research and analysis. Bojana specializes in domestic political, economic, human rights, and policy developments, with a specific focus on EU integration of the Western Balkans.

Elene Tkhlashidze

RECONOMY Core Team

Operations Manager

Elene Tkhlashidze is the Operations Manager at RECONOMY. She is a private sector development practitioner, with 10 years of experience in Swiss development cooperation. Her previous work in Moldova focused on inclusive development, with focus on equal access to opportunities for Moldovan women and men.

Emilija Jovanova Stoilkova

RECONOMY Core Team

Regional Manager Western Balkans

Emilija Jovanova Stoilkova is the Regional Manager for the Western Balkans at RECONOMY. She previously served as the Knowledge Management and Learning Manager. Her previous experience includes work in skills development, lifelong learning, inclusive market development, labor market insertion, private sector engagement, and workforce development. Emilija is passionate about knowledge management and continuous learning and education.

Eni Kocillari

Western Balkan Team

Program Officer Western Balkans

Eni Kocillari is the Program Officer for the Western Balkans at RECONOMY. She is a specialist in project management, with expertise on private sector development and economic growth areas. Her expertise encompasses the entire spectrum of project management, from project conception and initiation, planning, execution, performance monitoring, and project close.

Evgenija Krstevska

Western Balkan Team

Program Officer Western Balkans and North Macedonia Country Coordinator

Evgenija Krstevska is the Program Officer for the Western Balkans at RECONOMY. She has experience in project management, focusing on environmental protection and climate change. She is passionate about working with private sector development while twinning green and digital transformation and creating job opportunities and skills.

Ketevan Vardosanidze

Eastern Partnership Team

Program Officer Eastern Partnership

Ketevan Vardosanidze is the Program Officer for Eastern Partnership (EaP) countries at RECONOMY. She brings a wealth of experience from her previous roles in international development organisations and academia, specifically in the fields of climate change and sustainability.

Lili Hajdari

RECONOMY Core Team

Procurement and Accountant Officer

Lili Hajdari is the Procurement and Accountant Officer at RECONOMY. Her previous experience includes working for international and local organizations in Albania, as well as public institutions. She has experience working in the areas of public procurement, monitoring, gender, and financial reporting.

Lilit Meliksetyan

Eastern Partnership Team

Armenia Country Coordinator and MRM/KML Officer

Lilit Meliksetyan is the Armenia Country Coordinator and Monitoring and Results Management, Knowledge Management and Learning Officer of the Eastern Partnership Team at RECONOMY. She is an economic development practitioner with an extensive background in value chain development, and a highly skilled management consultant, who has conducted a broad range of consultancies to MSMEs and NGOs from different sectors.

Marianna Avetisyan

Eastern Partnership Team

Program Officer Eastern Partnership

Marianna Avetisyan is the Program Officer for the Eastern Partnership (EaP) countries at RECONOMY. She is a business development specialist with over 8 years of experience managing business processes and an established track record of successfully generating business projects and initiatives within the private and public development sectors. Her experience also includes working in charity organizations and initiatives internationally.

Meri Biniashvili

Eastern Partnership Team

Finance and Administration Officer

Meri Biniashvili is the Finance and Administration Officer at RECONOMY, based in Tbilisi, Georgia. She is responsible for the overall supervision and quality assurance of finance and administrative processes in the Eastern Partnership regional team. Before joining RECONOMY, Meri has been working in private, international, and governmental organizations on various roles, including agile leadership, project management, administration, budget monitoring, as well as communications.

Muamer Niksic

RECONOMY Core Team

Monitoring & Results Measurement Manager

Muamer Niksic is the Monitoring and Results Measurement (MRM) Manager at RECONOMY. He is responsible for building and maintaining effective MRM systems guided by the DCED Standard for Results Measurement. His previous experience consists of work for various development projects in fields of education, social inclusion and economic development.

Nataliia Koshovska

RECONOMY Core Team

Gender and Social Inclusion Manager

Before joining RECONOMY as a Gender and Social Inclusion Manager, Nataliia, originally from Ukraine, worked within the UN system for 11 years in particular as a staff member of UNFPA and UNICEF in the development and humanitarian contexts. Nataliia is a passionate human rights advocate and focuses professionally on women’s economic empowerment, stereotypes-free education and career choices as well as promotes gender equality and zero tolerance to violence in the corporate sector.

Paulo Rodrigues

RECONOMY Core Team

Program Manager

Paulo Rodrigues is the Program Manager of RECONOMY. He holds an MA degree in Business Administration and an MAS in Development and Cooperation. Paulo is a private sector development expert with several years of experience, including as an entrepreneur himself. He has worked and advised multiple projects, in multiple countries, that promote inclusive economic development. His key expertise lies in the design and implementation of the market systems development approach and on the nexus of humanitarian response and development.

Raisa Tofan

Eastern Partnership Team

Program Officer Eastern Partnership

Raisa Tofan is the Program Officer for the Eastern Partnership countries at RECONOMY. She is an experienced fundraiser and certified project management specialist, working with private sector development, women economic empowerment, and social innovation. Her prior experience includes supporting the development of public programs for SMEs at the Organization for SME Sector Development in Moldova and working on sustainable development in non-profit organizations, including in the United States.

Rezarta Zeqaj

RECONOMY Core Team

Finance Manager

Rezarta Zeqaj is the Finance Manager at RECONOMY, responsible for managing the program’s financial management, controlling, and reporting system. Rezarta’s work experience spans over twenty years in financial and administrative management, compliance control, and budgeting functions.

Rusudan Zaalishvili

Eastern Partnership Team

Program Officer Eastern Partnership and MRM/KML Officer

Rusudan Zaalishvili, MRM/KML Officer at RECONOMY for the Eastern Partnership (EaP) countries, holds a Master’s in Social Sciences from King’s College London. Her expertise is in impact research, MEL, and project management. Her international development experience focuses on education, employability, and social and gender inclusion.

Sabin Selimi

RECONOMY Core Team

Knowledge Management, Learning, and Communications Manager

Sabin Selimi works for Helvetas as Knowledge Management, Learning, and Communications Manager at RECONOMY. His previous experience includes working in communication advisory roles for the government and various international development projects, with experience in the Balkans.

Stojan Mishev

Western Balkan Team

Finance and Administration Officer

Stojan Mishev is the Finance and Administration Officer for the Western Balkans at RECONOMY. He has experience working for both international and national organizations, such as the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), Swisscontact, and the Macedonian Red Cross. Stojan has experience in project management and finance and administration.

Valon Xoxa

Western Balkan Team

Program Officer Western Balkans and MRM/KML Officer

Valon Xoxa is the Program Officer for the Western Balkans at RECONOMY. He has over 10 years of experience in project management and implementation with international development partners in the region. His expertise in monitoring, coordination, and integration of projects has been instrumental in successful implementation of activities related to employment via Active Labour Market Programmes in Kosovo.

Vidoje Kojovic

Western Balkan Team

Program Officer Western Balkans

Vidoje Kojovic is the Program Officer for the Western Balkans at RECONOMY. Over the past four years, he has been an integral part of Helvetas, where he has cultivated his skills in driving sustainable progress. In his current role, Vidoje is enthusiastic to leverage this knowledge and experience to contribute to the mission of fostering inclusive and green economic development in the Western Balkans.

Partnerships

RECONOMY relies on implementing partnerships to bring about large-scale and sustainable change. Therefore, partnerships are important to our implementing model.

Regional Value Addition

The rationale for regional value addition is addressing problems and responding to opportunities where there are commonalities or similarities like the problem across countries. It is also possible that RECONOMY may replicate interventions in one country based on the learning from that intervention in a different country.

Creating a shared understanding of development philosophy – for sustainable and scalable impacts through facilitation – is at the core of RECONOMY. We stimulate changes for more facilitation roles of development organizations by engaging with local and regional conveners.

Three key areas:

Thematic focus

We map out individual countries, while at the same time having a regional perspective. In other words, the ‘national-regional’ dynamics and nexus will serve the process of identifying and testing ideas that will add benefits to more countries in the region in terms of new knowledge, shared experiences, and enhanced capacities through cooperation and a strong sense of shared interests. The focus is in line with the changing nature of global challenges and opportunities that countries in the region also face - from disruptive technologies for automation, globalization, and the aging workforce. The challenge is to link and leverage these potentials in new and different ways.

Institutional focus

The region's pressing problems are far too complex to be addressed by a single sector and an actor in a single country. We see RECONOMY as a multi-stakeholder initiative, involving private sector enterprises, public sector institutions, academia, and civil society organizations. While the region is diverse, it also shows common challenges and opportunities. RECONOMY works to improve the vertical flow of information about economic development, including such questions as performance monitoring and inclusive benefits.

Territorial focus

People do not live in the 'region', but in different countries. A large diversity of local partners and ideas contributes to increased capacity and local ownership as well as the generation of more innovative ideas. We do not directly support actors in the different systems, but work through partners to facilitate solutions that have a high likelihood of ownership and scale beyond the life span of RECONOMY. On a micro-level, we work with private sector businesses in the selected markets/economic sectors, commercial service providers, as well as with civil society organizations. On the meso-level, we work with public organizations like vocational education and training centers, universities, regional development agencies, free trade zones. The policy and business enabling environment dialogues deal with the improvement of the macro-level framework conditions.

Approach

Market Systems Development (MSD) is a development approach which is applied by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) and HELVETAS Swiss Intercooperation.

MSD is an approach that aims to make the market systems function better in order to increase the quality of life for people in need through the following:

We try to understand where market systems are failing to address the needs of the vulnerable and disadvantaged groups in society. We try to understand what constitutes systemic change and how change happens in (market) systems and how does that influence the design and implementation of our program.

We stimulate, but do not displace, market functions or actors. We encourage dialogue with stakeholders and actors, pointing out and discussing new opportunities. We support new linkages between actors from private and public sectors as well as civil society.

We encourage our private partners with skill and will to grow their business inclusively and collaborate with public actors towards frame conditions that ease inclusive and green economic development.

We deliver sustainable outcomes through competitive market actors achieving inclusive and green economic development. We apply a market-driven approach, focusing on identifying existing challenges and demands on the market, assisting market actors in overcoming the challenges and creating more economic opportunities.

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