European Cities for Sustainable Public Finances – CSPF
A leap towards transparency, accountability and sustainability of public finances
European Cities for Sustainable Public Finances – CSPF – is a European reference group in local public financial management that unites the Chief Executive Officers/Chief Financial Officers and Finance Managers of the Cities of Amsterdam (NL), Barcelona (ES), Bordeaux (FR), Hamburg (DE), the City of London Corporation (UK) and Trondheim (NO) in order to
- Create a space for the exchange of experience and knowledge sharing on economic and financial local government topics
- Improve the comparability of financial data among European cities
- Enhance the quality, effectiveness, efficiency and accountability of public sector management.
This initiative is managed by KDZ and supported through active participation and partnership by the European Commission – Eurostat.
The CSPF is featured in a recent publication on "Local Public Finance" by Springer
10 September 2021
It presents a wide range of authors under the leadership of René Geissler, Gerhard Hammerschmid and Christian Raffer, providing analysis of local fiscal regulation across 21 European countries. The various book chapters provide a broad picture of local public finance regulation in theory and in practice, using different theoretical and national lenses for the analysis and addressed from an international comparative perspective. It is targeted both at practitioners in cities/municipalities as well as scholars.
Three members of the CSPF, Alexander Heichlinger, Emanuele Padovani and Julia Bosse, have contributed with a chapter on “Insights from City Financial Realities: Comparing and Learning across the Borders” based on the work carried out within the group.
Find the book here.
Municipal derivatives of the European Green Deal
13 July 2021
Alexander Heichlinger, Co-Founder and Chair of CSPF delivered a talk at the Ernest Lluch Foundation on the 13th of July, sponsored by the Diputacion of Barcelona. He spoke on the place of local government in transitioning towards environmental sustainability, also introducing the work of the CSPF.
Listen here, what he had to say (Starts at min. 31)
2 June 2021
In a recent virtual learning journey of the University of Applied Sciences of the City of Linz (FHH Oberösterreich) within their Master of Public Management programme to Barcelona, Alexander Heichlinger presented in his speech on The Cities - Our Future? the CSPF group as an exemplary model of cities networking and exchanging good practices with the aim to contribute to capacity building in public finances at local level. - The students, young public and private talents from across Austria, had an interesting discussion on how the CSPF addresses initiatives related to economic development and promotion, smart city deployment among others.
Local Public Finance – An International Comparative Regulatory Perspective now available
22 May 2021
We are proud to announce that the e-book version of Local Public Finance – An International Comparative Regulatory Perspective is finally available, courtesy of Springer Nature Group publishing.
With contributions from the CSPF’s own Emanuele Padovani and Alex Heichlinger, alongside many other experts in the field, this volume delves into one of the most challenging areas facing European public administrations today – balancing budgets, delivering on citizen demands, and adapting regulations to present needs, all with a view to crisis prevention and dealing with the constraints on local government.
The research project behind this undertaking was initiated by the Hertie School of Governance and the Bertelsmann Foundation, owing itself to the collective efforts of researchers from all over the EU.
CSPF Co-Chair Domroes Torsten at the European Commission’s ESPAS Task Force Working Group
29 April 2021
We are proud to inform you that CSPF co-chair Domroes Torsten from Hamburg has been invited to report on the group’s activity before representatives from all EU Member States at the European Commission’s EPSAS Task Force Working Group, which took place on the 28th and 29th of April, hosted by Eurostat and the German government. This event usually also includes stakeholders such as the World Bank, IPSAS Europe Accountancy and/or the OECD.
The CSPF featured at the opening of the University of Barcelona Advanced Public Management Master programme
13 April 2021
Earlier this month, our very own Alex Heichlinger spoke at the inauguration of the University of Barcelona’s Master programme in Advanced Public Management. This covered a variety of pressing topics, including post-Covid19 recovery, the role of municipalities in managing similar crises in the future, and the need to draw on existing best practice cases. In this context, Alex introduced the CSPF.
Presentation of the European CSPF Group to KDZ’s Scientific Advisory Group
23 November 2020
Robert Blöschl, Local Financial Management Expert at KDZ, presented the mission, objectives and approach of CSPF and its Financial Health Template with its 10 KPIs to KDZ’s Advisory Group.
CSPF’s financial health teamplate and KPIs presented at the smart, interactive talk of the PULSAR programme
11 November 2020
Alexander Heichlinger, Co-founder and Chair of CSPF, and Emanuele Padovani, External Key Expert and Associate Professor of Public Management and Accounting at the University of Bologna, presented the European CSPF Group at a webinar on “Interpretation of financial information and the use of performance indicators in the public sector” given by the Public Sector Accounting and Reporting (PULSAR) program organised by Worldbank. (For more information, please see the announcement of the event.)
Closing address/lecture in the Master of Public Management and Innovation (PMI) of the Bologna Business School
18 July 2020
Alexander Heichlinger, Co-founder and Chair of CSPF, presented the CSPF network during a lecture of the Master of Public Management and Innovation (PMI), which targets leaders of the regional and local administrations of the Italian Region Emilia Romagna.
Mission and objectives
CSPF aims at creating a joint space for the exchange of experience and knowledge sharing in the field of economic and financial local government topics. It is a forum for thinking together and improving the comparability of financial data among European cities and for enhancing the quality, effectiveness, efficiency and accountability of public sector management.
CSPF unites larger European cities that build on the core values of the respective organisations and that strive towards a different way of doing politics – politics that are committed to quality management, sustainability, liquidity and resilience of public sector finances as guarantors of Europe’s economic competitiveness, its social policies and thus ultimately the wellbeing of its citizens.
- To create real and practical dialogue about cutting-edge issues
- To advocate sound financial management, transparency and sustainability in European cities
- To maintain a strong link with and support of European policy formulation through showcasing strong local European experiences
- To contribute to European capacity building (knowledge transfer), i.e. regarding the EPSAS project of Eurostat.
The city members meet twice per year in one of the partner cities. Through practical presentations and discussions, the involvement of key thought leaders and a challenge-based approach (“Please help sessions“) a balanced mix of external input and peer learning is ensured. The success of the approach relies on building personal relationships among community members and developing an active passionate group. To this end, prior to each meeting, the city members are (often) asked to prepare specific inputs to facilitate discussions and the exchange. Joint lessons learned are captured and shared among the members and participants at the end of each meeting.
The uniqueness of this collaboration consists in the fact that fiscal and financial management issues are discussed for the first time from a cross-border perspective at city level. It is a timely initiative as public sector financial practices are still fragmented within Europe and its individual countries.
CSPF comprises the CEOs, CFOs and Finance Managers of the Cities of Amsterdam (NL), Barcelona (ES), Bordeaux (FR), Hamburg (DE), the City of London Corporation (UK) and Trondheim (NO).
It is managed by KDZ, which also accompanies and supports the group with its experts.
European Cities for Sustainable Public Finances (CSPF) was officially launched under the auspices of KDZ on 26 June 2020. It brings together the CEOs, CFOs and Finance Managers of the Cities of Amsterdam (NL), Barcelona (ES), Bordeaux (FR), Hamburg (DE), the City of London Corporation (UK) and Trondheim (NO).
Moreover, as European reference group in local public financial management, it counts on the active participation of the European Commission – Eurostat.
CSPF is the successor of the so-called European City Economic and Financial Governance (CEFG) Group, which was created in 2014 by the City of Barcelona and the European Institute of Public Administration, Barcelona (EIPA Barcelona), as well as five further major European cities to discuss fiscal and financial management issues from a cross-border perspective at city level. Proven results and successes of the group led to various group extensions and a wealth of outputs and insights produced.