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There are many proofs confirming the importance of sustainable development for Montenegro. Shared international challenges, global economic crisis, and, particularly, the country’s natural characteristics emphasize that sustainable development is the only way ahead. In 2002 Montenegro formed the National Council for Sustainable Development; in 2005 the Office for Sustainable Development was established, and the National Strategy of Sustainable Development was adopted in 2007. With these developments, Montenegro created the most advanced institutional basis for sustainable development in its region. After carefully observing the functioning of national sustainable development institutions, however, the Office for Sustainable Development embarked upon the process of their reform in 2008. As a result, the Council was fundamentally reformed, having its membership downsized and composition transformed. Two Annual Reports on the Implementation of the Sustainable Development Strategy have been completed and the process of defining sustainable development indicators commenced in co-operation with the United Nations. This paper critically examines the evolution of the set-up of the Montenegrin sustainable development system, presents the advantages and disadvantages of the government-anchored Council. Based on the lessons learnt, it presents recommendations for policy makers on promoting and enforcing sustainable development. The paper argues that only by effectively co-ordinating all segments of society and ensuring genuine participation of outside-government stakeholders, the countries can ensure that sustainable development principles are incorporated in national and local policies. The independence and pro-activeness in approach of sustainable development institutions is essential in ensuring the supremacy of sustainable practices in decision-making. Considering the similarities in historic, economic and social developments of the former socialist countries, the recommendations put forward by this paper could be of particularly relevance for the countries of Southeast, Central, and Eastern Europe. The findings of this paper could also contribute to the wider debate on sustainable development institutional models.
PAPER REVISED: 2010-02-19
PAPER ACCEPTED: 2010-06-14
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THERMAL SCIENCE YEAR 2010, VOLUME 14, ISSUE Issue 3, PAGES [593 - 611]
  1. ***, Government of Montenegro, National Strategy of Sustainable Development,
  3. ***, Parliament of Montenegro, Declaration on Montenegro as an Ecological State, Official Gazette of the Republic of Montenegro, No. 39/91
  4. ***, Constitution of the Republic of Montenegro, Official Gazette of the Republic of Montenegro, No. 48/92
  5. ***, Ministry of Tourism and Environment, Project "Directions for the Development of an Ecological State"
  6. ***, News web portal: "Montenegrin Prime Minister Filip Vujanovic at the Summit in Johannesburg: Conditions for the Implementation of Idea of Montenegro as an ecological state created,"
  7. www.montenegro.yu/vijesti/arhive/septembar2002/04/vijesti.htm
  8. ***, Decision Establishing the National Council for Sustainable Development, Official Gazette of Montenegro, No. 47/08
  9. ***, Second Annual Report on the Implementation of the National Sustainable Development Strategy, prepared by the Office for Sustainable Development and adopted by the Government of Montenegro in December 2009,

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