Prvo soočenje županskih kandidatov (First public debate of mayoral candidates)

Due to a newly confirmed law, MoP’s of the Slovenian parliament could also be mayor at the same time. After the parliamentarian elections were held in late 2011, the majors, elected in that occasion, lost their mandate. Eleven municipalities had to elect a new major, although for just half a mandate. However, things came together and as we had now a space of our own, we initiated the program “Kultura Informiranja” (Culture of Informing) which bothers mainly about proliferation of information and on enlightening the complexity of things.

In this case, our mission was clear, we wanted to bring all seven candidates, all potential future majors together and listen to their ideas, solutions and recipes for our little town. A format we quite well known for national elections, televised debates are in most countries a standard nowadays, in our region however, this debate of ours, held on March 3rd, 2012, was the first one ever for local elections. It was and is our conviction to this day, that people must become more interested in debates, possibly assisted by real public, in our case we had round about 100 persons at that evening. Additionally we were able to arrange live broadcasting via Radio Laser and live-streaming via Internet as well as re-broadcasting it twice during the next days on TV SG.

We had to put up the scene and an adequate ambient for the entire event and we decided to ask the Koroška Galerija Likovnih Umetnosti to lend us some of the already prepared panels. We knew they exist, and that they document the golden age of Slovenj Gradec, with international diplomacy coming and going. As we were in perfect contact to the gallery and to their director Marko Košan this should be an easy fix.

As deputy chairwoman, journalist and public relations expert Urška Čerče during that time still worked pro-actively for more than one media, we could also invite Radio Laser and TV SG into this new coproduction of ours.

Thanks to Dani Vaupot for handling the internet live-stream, which reached more than 1.000 people in average that evening. Thanks to Andraž Gabrijelčič for the audio, Miran Smrtnik for recording the video and Dušan Stojanovič for post-production and re-broadcast on TV SG.

The event probably reached up to 85% of the population entitled to vote, which was that much of a success, that the next years profit-making medias took this chance.

Thanks also Vinko Vrčkovnik, Peter Pungartnik, Andrej Čas, Jurij Šumečnik, Ksandi Javornik, Bojan Mestek and Boris Raj for accepting our invitation.

If you are interested in the debate, here is the video of the event in Slovenian language

This project was another important milestone in the history of raum AU. We could once more, in a quite smooth and spontaneous way, cooperate with all partners involved. Becoming more usual, but still not the usual way to do things around here.

This event, which was followed by a second debate a fortnight later set new standards in our region!

Urška Čerče moderated this public debate in such exemplarily way, that since today in journalistic circles this moderation of hers is used as a best practice example. Bravo Urška, Bravo raum AU and congrats to Slovenj Gradec!!