OPINION

Opinion

. .. The construction of any modern and large public project requires specialized technical knowledge, good economic planning and high-quality work from the contractor. In the present conditions, there is one more requirement: broad public consensus and the definite resolution of conflicting interests. In the past, all that was needed was the solid ministerial decision, a clear assignment procedure and a good contractor… Today one has to deal with neighbors, land-grabbers, community centers, environmentalists, international treaties, dubious contractors, complex and non-transparent tenders, community funds, bank subsidies, criminal and civil courts, parliamentary controls, pluralist media and, above all, with politicians who do not necessarily see their job as a vocation. All these have to change. There is, indeed, an opportunity available and that is the third Community Support Framework. It’s enough to point out what our European partners have shelled out in funds in order to narrow the gap between the big and the more backward states, as regards the quality of infrastructure. Subsidies do not only aim at the implementation of projects. They also aim at transforming our way of life and upgrading the quality of public administration. In the past, the construction of public works aimed at promoting the electoral objectives of the ruling party, distributing income among specific circles and, finally, at sustaining a high growth rate. In the coming era, public works could prompt a genuine upgrade in the function of public administration. The Polytechnic uprising still shines. This is less due to the unfulfilled nature of the demands of that era than to the moral dimension of those events. This dimension makes it such a powerful societal symbol, binding those who took part in those events regardless of their political affiliations.