REFORMING THE ADMINISTRATIVE-TERRITORIAL SYSTEM AS A BASIS FOR SUCCESSFUL DECENTRALIZATION OF POWER: FRENCH AND UKRAINIAN EXPERIENCE
Keywords:decentralization, united territorial community, democratization, administrative-territorial system, territory, government, France, Ukraine
This paper outlines the main approaches of the "decentralization" and "local self-government" concept understanding, it identifies the main features of the Ukrainian administrative-territorial system reform and its problematic aspects.
It was found that as a result of the attempt to complete the formation of the UTC, the aspects due to which these territories had previously refused to unite were ignored. Among the key ones: the resistance of local authorities, protection of own interests by local elites, conflict of interests of communities, territorial or resource disparities. These problems have not been resolved and they can significantly impair the further effective operation of the newly established UTCs. That is why this issue is especially relevant today for Ukrainian researchers of public administration.
To develop recommendations for a possible solution to these problems, it was proposed to study the experience of EU member states, which are the most relevant group in the process of Ukraine's integration into the EU. In the context of improving the administrative-territorial system, the most interesting for us is the experience of France, which has a similar territory and is a unitary state. We are also interested in the historical experience of decentralization in France due to its historical duration and the thorough approach of the French government to this issue.
As a result of the scientific literature analysis, it was found that today there are two main aspects that experience of decentralization in France points to:
- support and concentration on the development of small settlements to ensure their further independence – this is the approach of permission;
- introduction of supervision and control over local self-government bodies of newly created UTCs through the legislative implementation of the institute of Prefects;
The first point will allow developing the most vulnerable areas and solving several problems relevant to Ukraine: excessive urbanization, rural extinction, internal migration, lack of innovation and development in the agricultural industry. The second element will allow in the early stages to identify and solve the manifestations of the problems described above, which are due to the acceleration of the creation of UTC.
All the above-mentioned facts demonstrate the continuing need to improve the modern administrative-territorial structure of Ukraine, due to the existing problems in this area and their impact on the prospects for further implementation of the decentralization reform in our country
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