Executive Education

Eastern Partnership (EaP) Executive Leadership Programmes

Panel discussion with Dr. Bettina Giesecke (International Exchange and Parliamentary Cooperation Programmes, German Bundestag Administration), Ms. Ketevan Kvinikadze (Secretary-General of the Parliament Georgia) and Ms. Inara Valiyeva (Acting Chairperson, Innovation and Digital Development Agency GIZ-Civil TVET), moderated by Ms. Latica Tomašić Kickert (Global Adaptive Leadership Educator, Harvard Kennedy School)

Breaking Gender Barriers in Public Administration

Persistent gender imbalances hinder women from accessing leadership and decision-making roles in public administration, despite their substantial presence in the sector, resulting in limited opportunities for their advancement to top leadership positions.

For this reason, Hertie School Executive Education developed two executive programmes targeting female mid-level executives from the parliamentary administrations and the public sectors of Moldova, Georgia, Ukraine, Azerbaijan, and Armenia.


Format, Delivery, and Objectives

To accommodate the busy schedules of mid-level executives, the training programme has been divided into multiple sections. This approach helps participants effectively manage their commitments while getting the most out of the programmme. The comprehensive training programmme spans several weeks of advanced training in Berlin, along with networking activities, projects, and group work in different regions. 

Two programmes took place between December 2022 and July 2023.


A Tailored Learning Experience

The primary objectives of these executive programmes centered on enhancing the leadership, organisational, managerial, and communication skills of the participants. Furthermore, they aimed to foster personal growth and cultivate their roles as catalysts for innovation and change within their respective institutions. The programmes also aimed to enhance their professional development opportunities, strengthen their ability to overcome various challenges in their field of work and build a global network of women leaders in legislative administration and the public sector.

To achieve these objectives, the training content and methodologies were thoroughly selected. Hence Hertie School Executive Education developed six different modules for the programmes, consisting of:

  1. Strategic communication and leadership;
  2. Digital transformation, organisational innovation and change in public administration;
  3. Ethics and integrity in the public sector;
  4. People management and personal development in the public sector; 
  5. Leadership and resilience in times of crises; and
  6. Networking. 

The training sessions were delivered by renowned experts in the field and were conducted in an engaging and interactive format. They included group work, discussions, case studies, and visits to government facilities that allowed participants to gain insights into the German policy landscape, share best practices from their various backgrounds, and contribute their expertise. The sharing of experiences provided a platform for meaningful networking in an environment that emphasized values such as respect, confidentiality, non-discrimination, and trust. In addition, the sessions included a critical gender perspective that examined the intersections between gender, leadership, and power dynamics.


The Networking Event

Both programmes concluded in a joint networking event titled "Leading with Impact: Executive Training Programme on Networking, Adaptive Leadership, and Female Leadership in the Eastern Partnership Countries," held in July 2023. This three-day intensive training programme brought together the two cohorts, enabling them to get to know each other and build relationships. The training provided participants with a comprehensive understanding of networking, emphasising its significance and practical applications to enhance their networking skills and cultivate valuable connections. During the first two days, participants benefited from sessions on networking and adaptive leadership. The final day featured an interactive panel discussion focused on building and maintaining professional networks, featuring insights from high-level officials with diverse backgrounds. The executive training closed up with a celebratory boat tour, offering participants an opportunity to reflect on the seminar weeks and networking days while enjoying the scenic views of Berlin from the water.

We would like to thank our partners, the Regional Fund for Public Administration Reform of the Eastern Partnership and the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH, as well as our outstanding experts. We also thank the German Bundestag and all others who contributed to the success of this executive training programme.

The two cohorts during the networking days with GIZ and Hertie School Executive Education staff.


The Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH (English: German Agency for International Cooperation) is the main German development agency. It is headquartered in Bonn and Eschborn and provides services in the field of international development cooperation and international education work. The organisation's self-declared goal is to deliver effective solutions that offer people better prospects and sustainably improve their living conditions.

The "Modern and Strong Parliamentary Administration in the Eastern Partnership" project is under the GIZ Eastern Partnership Regional Fund for Public Administration Reform. The aim of the Eastern Partnership (EP) is to strengthen relations between the European Union (EU) and Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine. The governments of these countries (EP countries) are facing huge challenges and need to implement crucial and highly complex reforms.

Faculty and experts

The programme included sessions with:

  • Dr. Jessica Breaugh Bossdorf, Research Fellow at Center for Digital Governance, Hertie School
  • Eva Christiansen,  Partner, FGS Global (Europe) GmbH, Former Media Advisor and Head of the Department of Political Planning, Innovation and Digital Policy, Strategic IT Steering under former German Chancellor Angela Merkel
  • Prof. Dr. Luciana Cingolani, Assistant Professor of Public Administration, Hertie School
  • Prof. Dr. Thurid Hustedt, Dean of Graduate Programmes and Professor of Public Administration and Management, Hertie School
  • Latica Tomašić Kickert, Global Adaptive Leadership Educator, Harvard Kennedy School
  • Prof. Johanna Mair, PhD, Professor of Organisation, Strategy and Leadership, Hertie School
  • Prof. Dr. Andrea Roemmele, Dean of Executive Education and Professor of Communication in Politics and Civil Society, Hertie School
  • Cornelius Schaub, Founder and Managing Director of the Decision Institute and Senior Expert at TheDive
  • Monika Weber-Fahr, Senior Advisor, CreativeShifts.org