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News Multi-disciplinary alliances key to prepare for and respond to droughts

A regional workshop on Integrated Drought Management was held in Bratislava at Slovak Hydrometeorological Institute on 5-6 October 2012.

It was a join initiative of Global Water Partnership Central and Eastern Europe (GWP CEE), GWP Technical Committee and World Meteorological Organization (WMO). The main objective of the workshop was to formulate and commit to the Integrated Drought Management Programme (IDMP) initiative.

The workshop brought together 58 key stakeholders from different sectors such as meteorology, water management and agriculture and international organizations - International Commission for the Protection of the Danube River, UN Economic Commission for Europe, United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification and Drought Management Centre for South Eastern Europe.

Unlike floods, drought is a natural phenomenon that takes some to build up and is difficult to predict. Several indicators used in climatology and agriculture have been established to assess to which extent drought occurred. Recently, GWP CEE has prepared a mapping study reviewing existing policies and strategies in Central and Eastern Europe.

In his opening speech, Dr. Mohammed Ait Kadi, GWP Technical Committee Chair said "A drought is a moment of strain. Approach to mobilize stakeholders need to change over the time as drought might change from seasonal episode to a long term famine. The most important is to create alliances for cooperation that will be able to react to changes".

Picture is different across the world. In South Asia, not only crops are in stake but also livestock management which is one of main pillars of the local economy. Insurance against drought will also not work out well in this part of the world. Dr. Pervaiz Amir from GWP South Asia proposed setting up endowment fund to address drought and strengthen institutional framework with Regional Drought Management Center, similar to Drought Management Center for South Eastern Europe.

Galina Stulina GWP Central Asia and Caucasus pointed out that Central Asian countries have to develop their own national policies to deal with climate change, where the development of alternative environmentally friendly energy sources and energy efficiency should become key priorities.

According to Milan Matuska, Regional Coordinator "Experts from different sectors proposed various measure to mitigate negative consequences of drought such as special tillage helping farmers keeping more water in soil than before".

Prof. Pavol Bielek from Slovak Agricultural University in Nitra mentioned in his presentation that around one third of precipitation in Slovakia is accumulated in soil which has an important role in storing water in landscape. However, soil water holding capacity is actually decreased by compacting upper layer by heavy farm machinery or sealing of surface due to construction of roads and buildings.

The workshop served as a peer review of the regional Drought Management Programme by key stakeholders. Involvement of more sectors such as tourism, navigations and insurance companies during implementation phase was echoed by the participants.

By end of the year, recommendations and suggestions will be incorporated in a detailed workplan and budget for 2013-2015 forming a basis for the new programme.

For more information contact GWP CEE Regional Secretariat at gwpcee[at]



Presentations from Integrated Drought Management Workshop that took place at Slovak Hydrometeorological Institute in Bratislava on 5-6 October 2012.

WMO Drought Activities and Regional Perspectives: An Overview 
Jose Camacho, Scientific Officer Agricultural Meteorology Division, WMO (PDF, 2.18 MB)

Water Scarcity and Climate Uncertainty: What Do We Know on Droughts in Europe
Elena Mateescu, National Meteorological Administration, Romania and National Focal Point UNCCD (PDF, 0.78 MB)

Drought Monitoring and Early Warning Indicators as Tools for Climate Change Adaptation 
Lucka Bogataj, University of Ljubljana, Slovenia (PDF, 2.22 MB)

Drought Management in Context of River Basin Planning According to European Union Water Framework Directive 
Elena Fatulova, Chair of GWP Slovakia (PDF, 0.29 MB)

Evidence of Droughts in Agriculture, Economic and Environmental Implications 
Attila Nagy, Debrecen University, Hungary (PDF, 2.10 MB)

Assessment of Damages Caused by the Drought in Agriculture, Environment and Water Supply 
Pavol Bielek, Slovak Agriculture University in Nitra, Slovakia (PDF, 0.31 MB)

Drought Management Centre for Southeastern Europe: Vulnerabilities, Risks and Policy Recommendations 
Gregor Gregoric, Slovenian Environmental Agency, Drought Management Centre for Southeastern Europe (PDF, 0.77 MB)

Climate Change Adaptation in Transboundary Basins
Sonja Koeppel, UNECE Water Convention (PDF, 0.67 MB)

Experience on Drought Management in the Mediterranean
Michael Scoullos, GWP Mediterranean (PDF, 0.91 MB)

CarpatClim Project: The Database and Procedures for Drought Indices
Pavol Nejedlik, Slovak Hydrometeorological Institute (PDF, 1.96 MB)

Central Asia Experiences in Drought Management
Galina Stulina, SIC - ICWC, GWP Central Asia and Caucasus (PDF, 2.07 MB)

South Asia GWP: Rationale and Scope for Regional Integrated Drought Management Programme
Pervaiz Amir, Regional Panel of Experts, GWP South Asia (PDF, 0.38 MB)

Proposal for Integrated Drought Management Programme in Central and Eastern Europe and Commitments for the Future Platform
Janusz Kindler, GWP Poland (PDF, 0.36 MB)


Contact information GWP CEE Regional Secretariat (email:
News type Inbrief
File link
Source of information GWP CEE Regional Secretariat
Keyword(s) drought
Geographical coverage Slovak Republic,
News date 16/11/2012
Working language(s) ENGLISH