Municipal Partnership Programme

In the municipal partnership program, ICLD offers local governments in a number of partner countries and Swedish municipalities and regions, the possibility to enter result oriented collaborations for exchange and peer learning.

The objective of the programme is to strengthen local democracy by increasing:

  • the influence of marginalized groups and young people on local decision making,
  • the number of women in decision-making positions in local governments,
  • the openness, transparency and accountability of local governments.

ICLD is convinced that people’s lives and situation can be improved, and poverty can be reduced through the development of local democracy in municipalities and local governments.

Therefore, ICLD supports participants in the partnerships, elected officials and civil servants, as change-agents to impact and develop practices in their own organisations within equity, participation, transparency and accountability. Organisational results such as formalizing more democratic practices, can positively impact citizens situation on societal level. For example, improved access to rights and enhanced living conditions for vulnerable groups. The collaboration can be applied across the entire municipal area of responsibility.

Partnerships for the Goals: A municipal partnership is also a way for local governments to achieve the Sustainable development goals and ICLD offers resources to implement the 2030 Agenda in their operations. For more information on the programme, see the municipal partnership Guidelines.

Eligible countries for collaboration

Collaboration is possible with countries on the DAC-list of OECD. The following countries, divided into four clusters, are eligible for Municipal Partnerships:

Europe – Bosnia and Hercegovina, Kosovo, Serbia and Ukraine
Latin America – Colombia, Guatemala
East Africa – Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda
Southern Africa – Botswana, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe

In addition to the above countries, there are other countries where municipalities already have a dialogue or completed/ongoing inceptions or projects. ICLD intends to allow these countries to continue their commitment and provide funding. These countries include Bosnia and Herzegovina, Georgia, North Macedonia, Moldova, Indonesia, China, Vietnam, Mozambique, and Namibia.

Interested in joining the programme?

One can apply for an inception, usually the first phase of a partnership, at any time throughout the year. For Projects and Steering groups as well as the other components of the programme there are certain calls for applications. In 2024, deadlines for applications are planned to February 15th, April 15th, August 28th and November 1st.

With new guidelines from April 2023, ICLD has a new project planning tool that must be used for Project applications. If you have started or completed the inception or expansion phase and are not familiar with the new ICLD project planning tool, but are about to apply for a project/steering group, contact the MPP team at and we will help you! Otherwise, by pressing the buttons below you find information about the different components of the programme, and about applying for them.