CoPraNet: Public Participation in the Portuguese Coastal Zone
Type of Entry:
Since the Århus Convention (1998), people are guaranteed the right to public participation. In Integrated Coastal Management projects public participation is an important factor that contributes to the success of such initiatives. The public can put in local knowledge and expertise and its involvement ensures democracy and pluralism. Portugal used to have a strongly centralized government and this is still reflected by some of the troubles faced in public participation practices today. Portugal also takes part in many cooperative initiatives concerning ICM and public participation, for example projects in the Atlantic Sea region. Now-a-days Public legal frameworks about land management in general, and Coastal Zone Management in particular, also include public participation at different levels. Alexandra Sena, a technic of the Algarve’s Coordinating Commission of Regional Development, comments on public participation in the Portuguese coastal zone.