Public participation

Public participation is one of the core principles in sustainable water management as required by the Protocol on Flood Protection to the Framework Agreement to the Sava River Basin. The International Sava River Basin Commission (Sava Commission) in the framework of Sava FRMP preparation ensures and encourages active public participation to facilitate involvement of all relevant stakeholders in implementation of the Protocol. Public participation aims at transparency of the decision making process, to gain the support for the implementation of the Protocol, and to raise awareness about the issues concerning flood risk management. Furthermore, broad involvement of all interested facilitates the establishment of effective structures and mechanisms for public participation, inform the wider public and mobilize main key stakeholders to participate in activities on the Sava river basin level.
Public participation activities undertaken during preparation of the Sava FRMP can be summarized into three main categories:
Information sharing about the development of the Sava FRMP, its preparation phases and the implemented consultation activities implemented, publicly accessible , on the official Sava Commission website throughout the preparation period.
Preparation, and presentation to the public, of different publications, containing information on the Sava FRMP development phases, such as through the official bulletin of the Sava Commission– Sava NewsFlash, a periodic publication regularly distributed to more than 200 stakeholders directly and available through the official web site of the Sava Commission. Presentations of the Sava FRMP development at meetings of stakeholder groups in the Parties to the FASRB and Montenegro, organized by the ISRBC or other organizations/institutions.
The preparation of the Sava FRMP was marked by a number of meetings of the staff of the Secretariat of the ISRBC, as well as of the experts preparing the Sava FRMP, with representatives of national authorities, research institutions, national and international organizations. The meetings aimed at collecting information and data, as well as discussing issues related to the management of the basin. The meetings constituted a valuable consultation process through which the stakeholders have contributed in the formulation of the FRMP.

Stakeholder Forum Workshop was organized on the 14th and 15th of November 2018 in Belgrade, Serbia.
Main objectives of the Workshop were to present the draft Sava FRMP to stakeholders and discuss its main findings and recommendations, as well as consider its forthcoming implementation and the next planning period. The Workshop was attended by around 50 participants from government and public institutions of the Sava River Basin countries, representatives of international organizations, non-government sector, the International Sava River Basin Commission, as well as the WBIF, the World Bank, and the project team working on Sava FRMP preparation.
The overall process of the Sava FRMP preparation has been led by the Permanent Expert Group for Flood Prevetnion (PEG FP) of the ISRBC. Certain issues touching upon the FRMP have been subject to ad-hoc discussions of other expert groups, in accordance with their competence. A major stakeholders / stakeholder groups have had an opportunity to actively participate in this process, as well as in all other activities of the ISRBC, by gaining the observer status. This opportunity is well-utilized by organizations already holding this status to actively participate at the meetings of the ISRBC and its PEG FRM. This sort of the two-way communication was a valuable asset during the preparation of the Plan.

The active involvement of the wide public in the preparation of the Sava Flood Risk Management Plan started on October 31, 2018. A total of 160 comments on the draft Sava FRMP were received. During the response process 61 comments were justified while 99  comments were not accepted. Out of 61 justified comments, for 45 comments it was concluded that the corrections/enhancements in the text of the Sava FRMP should be made.