The mountainous villages of Kosovo are on a verge of development due to a substantial number of challenges hindering their progress. The role that municipalities have in developing these villages is crucial in terms of overcoming these challenges, and through it, ensuring future development. This study has investigated the role this role while placing particular focus upon the municipalities of Shtërpce and Dragash. The study which included 150 research participants has been carried out in eleven mountain villages surrounding these municipalities. Through it several areas have been investigated, such as the quality of the public services offered, current economic standing of the mountain villages, and possibility of utilizing the present natural resources in ensuring local economic growth. The aim of the study was to explore the relationship between the municipalities of Dragash and Shtërpce and the surrounding mountain villages while examining the role that these municipalities have in the villages’ development. Some of the main findings of the study suggest that the local potential has not been utilized by the municipalities of Dragash and Shtërpce in order to develop their mountain villages. Such potential includes the use of local natural resources, as well as, tourism potential. Another aspect brought up by the study is that there is a low presence of women in the labor market although some market for hand-made things exists. In order to have an increased local economic development, municipality investment is highly important since it directly impacts the extent to which local potential is being used. One recommendation in order to enhance the role that the Dragash and Shtërpce municipalities have is to build a better communication system between the respective municipalities and mountain villages. Another important aspect is the municipalities’ investment in creating a marketing infrastructure which would not only improve the mountain villages’ economic standing, but it would also contribute to an increased income-provider for the inhabitants of these mountainous zones. Overall, the study has revealed that the extent to which municipalities play a role in mountain villages development in crucial in fostering their general progress.

Publication Date


Document Type

Senior Project

Student Type



Bowen, Brian

Advisor/Committee Member

Ahmeti, Shpend


AUK Honors Society

Note: imported from RIT’s Digital Media Library running on DSpace to RIT Scholar Works in January 2014.


American University in Kosovo