This section contains items that can be used to develop plans and techniques to engage stakeholders in the development of river basin management plans and other WFD related activities. It contains guidance documents for specific actions, such as citizen juries, and provides reports on specific projects designed to increase public participation across a range of sectors.



Citizens as Partners – OECD handbook on Information, Consultation and Public Participation

Practitioner’s guide for use by government officials. Provides a ‘road-map’ for building robust frameworks for informing, consulting and engaging citizens during policy making.  2001, 108 pages.



Participatory decision making for sustainable consumption

This report comments on the current theory and practice of public participation in environmental decision making.
March 2002, 50 pages, 294kb. ENV/EPOC/WPNEP(2001)17/FINAL.


Strategies for public participation in the management of transboundary waters in countries in transition

Report from a two-day seminar in Tartu, Estonia on public participation in water management. The proceedings draw together the texts of all the presentations made during the seminar, comments and discussions after the presentations, working groups results, list of participants and follow-up plans.
December 2001, 49 pages.


In addition, the following projects give access to a large number of reports on increasing public participation.

    River Dialogue

    River Dialogue was an international research project (2003 –2004) aimed at identifying the best approaches to increase public participation in implementation of the WFD, including preparation and implementation of river basin management plans. Principally, it employed Focus Groups and Citizen’s Juries to increase awareness and empowerment. River basins in Sweden, Estonia and the Netherlands were being used as case studies.

    A publication is available that disseminates experience of the project:
    ‘Focus Groups and Citizens’ Juries - River Dialogue Experiences in Enhancing Public Participation in Water Management.’ Edited by Kati Kangur, Tartu 2004. 

    The book provides practical recommendations on conducting citizens' juries and focus groups for public participation in the water management and can be downloaded from Peipsi Center for Transboundary Cooperation website:


    Harmonising Collaborative Planning (HarmoniCOP)


    This project was designed to improve public participation in river basin management planning (RBMP). Fifteen partners from Belgium, France, Germany, UK, Hungary, Italy, Netherlands, Spain and Switzerland are involved in the project. The objective is to generate useful information about public participation in RBMP and will be supported by external advisers constituting a stakeholder forum. Representatives from NGOs, local government, policy makers, water industry and farming will be involved with the project as external advisers during its implementation.

    The final HarmoniCOP handbook ‘Learning together to manage together – Improving participation in water management’ is now available from the following website:


    WaterCo-Governance (WaterCoG) project.

    WaterCoG is a project co-funded by the North Sea Region Programme 2014 - 2020.

    The WaterCoG project brings together partners from Sweden, Germany, Denmark, Netherlands and the UK to determine the benefits of a more collaborative (Co-Governance) approach to water management to enable effective stakeholder and community participation.

    Existing tools that help facilitate the adoption of successful participatory approaches will be collated, alongside with new tools developed within the project to provide a toolbox for wider uptake across the North Sea Region.



    Delivery of the Water Framework Directive through collaborative action between civil society and the private sector - WaterLIFE Action 3 Report (2017)

    The purpose of this exercise has been to better understand the current capacity of Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) to engage with and influence the Water Framework Directive (WFD) River Basin Management Planning (RBMP) process, to identify capacity needs and to develop strategies to implement them.




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