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Posted by : Zelena Istra

PINS: Public Interest - Not for Sale (2013-2014)

Abstract:

Project aimed to develop new anti-corruption models and to reaffirm public interest in decision-making processes, while enhancing civil society and government capacities for fighting corruption by increasing transparency, accessibility of information, and citizen participation/oversight on the local level. Our activities were focused on local cases of military property and their conversion into civilian purposes, such as the Brijuni Rivijera project plan, a luxury tourist resort spanning over 24 km of the coast, which was planned without any public discussion. We established an intense cooperation with the local citizens’ initiative "I love Pula" on its numerous actions: collecting signatures against a proposed tourist resort with a golf course; organizing public discussions; publishing the initiative's newspaper; organizing one of the biggest protests in Pula in recent years; as well as implementing a photography exhibition. The publication about the Croatian conversion experience was published: “Who gets former military property? The experience of conversion in Croatia’’).

Description

PINS aimed to develop new models for the fight against corruption and to re-affirm public interest in decision-making processes. It also sought to increase civil society and government capacities for fighting corruption both in the security sector and in the general management of public assets through increasing transparency, accessibility of information, and citizen participation/oversight in relation to public procurement and conversion of security sector assets on the local level.

Throughout the project, Green Istria's activities were focused on local cases of military property and their conversion into civilian purposes. In that context, we examined the Brijuni Rivijera project, within which the construction of a luxury tourist resort spanning over 24 km of the south Istria coast was planned top-down, without any public discussion or citizen participation in the decision-making process. We established an intense cooperation with and supported the local citizens’ initiative "I love Pula" ("Volim Pulu") in the fight for a more transparent conversion process of the Muzil area and its ex-military barracks, now one of the locations within the Brijuni Rivijera. The initiative was very active during the project period, because at the time the Pula General Urban Plan went through changes, including in relation to the Muzil area. We supported numerous actions of the initiative in order to encourage public participation in the public discussion regarding the mentioned spatial plan: collecting citizen signatures against a proposed tourist resort with an 18-hole golf course on Muzil; organizing several public discussions; creating content for a new issue of the initiative's newspaper; organizing one of the biggest protests in Pula in recent years; as well as implementing a photography exhibition. Green Istria also supported the creation of a publication about the Croatian conversion experience which included the Muzil case ("Kome propadaju bivše vojne nekretnine? Iskustva prenamjene u Hrvatskoj"-- “Who gets former military property? The experience of conversion in Croatia’’), and organized its presentation in Pula.

The project was implemented in 2013 and 2014 by the Centre for Peace Studies. Green Istria was one of eight CSOs in the project consortium.