Vladimír (Vlad) Benč joined SCAUR in July 2022 as an Urban Specialist based in Vienna, and telecommuting from Prešov, Slovakia. He has been providing operational and analytical leadership in carrying out activities implemented by the ECA SCAUR Urban Team in Slovakia since May 2018, with a particular focus on supporting the growing Catching-up Regions Initiative (CuRI program). As a member of a multi-disciplinary team, Vladimír is providing tailored support to the three Slovak lagging regions (Prešov, Košice and Banská Bystrica), with a focus on boosting the impact of EU investments in these regions through analytical work, technical assistance and capacity building. He has an educational background in business administration and management, and has ample experience with the key aspects of the urban and regional development portfolio within the EU, and specifically in Slovakia.
Vladimír has worked for most of his professional career for the think-tank “Slovak Foreign Policy Association (SFPA)” as a researcher (focusing on regional policy & development, cross-border cooperation, and EU cohesion policy), project manager and director of the SFPA branch office in Prešov. As a volunteer, he advocated for the Third Sector Interests as a representative of the National Forum of the Third Sector in Slovakia and a member of the Slovak-Ukrainian Intergovernmental Commission for Cross-Border Cooperation.
When Vladimír manages to escape from in front of his computer screen, he enjoys spending time with his three beloved daughters and trying very hard not to be the worst basketball and ice-hockey player in the city of Prešov. He also enjoys skiing and hiking.