All around the world, countries are moving towards decentralization of government to the local and regional levels, the Strasbourg convention of 1985 – and legislation in Poland, Germany, England, Estonia, and others.

Local government is recognized globally as a driving force of national growth. In many countries around the world, local government serves as the engine of socio-economic growth, as an independent and influential force in enhancing national economic growth.

However, in Israel, this potential is not realized in full, due to the high degree of centralization of Government.

Israel is one of the most centralized countries in the OECD in terms of the distribution of power and authority between the national and local governments. This results in Israeli cities lacking authority over fundamental issues on the local level and pertaining to the daily lives of residents and visitors, such as property and city taxes, public transportation, energy, education, welfare, and more. On the other hand, cities are required to devote a significant portion of their budget to funding national public services,  such as education and welfare, despite their lack of authority  in these areas.   

Forum 15's key mission is to work towards the restructuring the relations between national and local governments in Israel.  In this framework, the Forum advocates for augmenting and enhancing the municipal's control over budgets and legislation in a variety of fields  - planning and building, enforcement, education, transportation, environment, etc.). At the same time, Forum 15 opposes attempts by the government to deepen the deficient budgeting of national services which are implemented by the local authorities.