Federalism experts gathered in New Delhi to fine-tune conference papers

India’s Home Minister, Shri Shivraj Patil, and Arnold Koller, the chair of the Forum and former President of Switzerland.

The Government of India recently hosted a three-day ‘pre-conference’ gathering in New Delhi where federalism experts fine-tuned background papers that will serve as a key resource to the Fourth International Conference on Federalism to be held in New Delhi Nov. 5 to Nov. 8.

The Inter-State Council Secretariat of the Government of India is organizing the International Conference in partnership with the Forum of Federations.

The pre-conference event was opened Feb. 21 by the Home Minister of India, Shri Shivraj Patil, and by Arnold Koller, the chair of the Forum, and a former president of Switzerland. More than 500 people attended the pre-conference including senior officials from the federal and state governments. During the inaugural session yesterday, the Home Minister launched the website of the 4th International Conference, http://federalism2007.nic.in

In the following two days, Indian and international experts reviewed, critiqued and discussed the background papers. The title of the conference is ‘Unity in Diversity: Learning from Each Other.’

About 1,000 participants from 100 countries will be invited to attend the November conference.

The four themes to be addressed at the conference are:

* Building on and Accommodating Diversities
* Emerging Issues in Fiscal Federalism
* Interaction in a Federal System
* Local Government and Federal Systems

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