Serbia—Preparedness, Planning, and Economic Security Program (PPES)

Client: U.S. Agency for International Development

Duration: 2006-2013

Region: Eastern Europe and Central Asia

Country: Serbia

Solutions: Fragile States

Only a half-generation removed from civil war, Serbia has also been prone to flooding, including devastating floods in 2006 and 2010 that wrecked communities and small businesses and threatened the fragile social order. The Preparedness, Planning, and Economic Security (PPES) project increased stability by working on three fronts: building the capacity of vulnerable communities to prepare for crises and natural disasters, helping small businesses grow and expand into new markets within and beyond Serbia, and working to empower Serbian youth.

Sample Activities

  • Train municipalities in disaster management so they can better protect citizens and prevent or mitigate disasters in their communities.
  • Launch a Certified Municipalities Group where emergency-trained communities can share information and strengthen collaboration with national disaster management authorities.
  • Identify business sectors with the greatest chance for success, providing a basis for group training in management, marketing, and sales.
  • Coach companies in effective participation in international and national trade fairs.

Select Results

  • Helped usher in the Law on Emergency Situations that brought Serbia’s legal framework up to European Union standards and devolved significant authority to municipalities for disaster response and management.
  • Trained and certified 125 municipalities in local disaster response.
  • Trained 1,300 first responders.
  • Improved local-level response, damage assessment, recovery efforts, and citizen communication.
  • Brokered a public-private partnership between Manpower Inc. and Serbia’s Ministry for Youth and Sport to help young people find jobs and employers recruit qualified workers.
  • Led creation and adoption of a National Strategy for Career Guidance and Counseling and introduced it into 15 high schools.
  • Established a Career Center at the International University in Novi Pazar.
  • Provided entrepreneurship education to 6,000 young people through Youth Offices and Junior Achievement activities.
  • From April to September 2010, strengthened economies of South Serbia and Sandzak by generating $1.2 million in new sales through trade fairs, helped nine companies enter new international markets, helped five companies expand into new domestic markets, and generated a 25‐to‐1 return on investment on trade fair support.


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