January 15, 2020 Membership

IWA Launches a new Young Water Professionals Chapter in Serbia

A new IWA Young Water Professionals (IWA YWP) Chapter is being launched in Serbia on 22 November 2019. This new IWA YWP chapter is open to all water (related) professionals age 35 and below, who are IWA members or want to get acquainted with IWA. IWA took the time to discuss the motivation and set up with the Chair of the Chapter, Dr Stevo Lavrnić.

Q: What is the motivation behind setting up a chapter in Serbia?

Unfortunately,the  Serbian Water Sector is not famous for its excellence. Belgrade is the only European capital located on the Danube River that has no wastewater treatment plant. There is a lot of work to be done in the Serbian water sector and there are so many opportunities to engage, to connect and to share knowledge, ideas an visions. In the whole country, around 350 Wastewater Treatment Plants (WWTPs) need to be built in order to comply with the EU Directive. There are not even enough people to facilitate this endeavour. Therefore it is of utmost importance to put an effort on the professional development of the next generation of water experts. That is why we are setting up a YWP chapter in Serbia; to move the Serbian water sector, to bring in the inspiring benefit of international networking and support national young water professionals in their careers.

Q: What will you aim to do with this new IWA YWP chapter in Serbia?

YWP Serbia aims to build a wide network of water professionals (under the age of 35), related to all areas of the water sector and the full water cycle, such as water and wastewater treatment, flood protection, torrent and erosion control, environmental protection, irrigation and drainage, groundwater engineering, etc. This new chapter should act as a platform for professional networking, knowledge sharing, learning and getting in touch with established water professionals.

Empowering young Serbian water professionals via the amazing IWA network, platforms and opportunities will certainly contribute to a better national recognition of their specific situation and enable their better integration inside the professional circles. Moreover, the chapter will enable Serbian YWPs to have a better presence at the international level through collaboration with other national chapters, sharing IWA’s vision and presence of the chapter at different IWA events. And ultimately, it will strengthen the national water sector.

Q: How can people get in touch?

Through the IWA members that are in the committee to organize the chapter. You can connect with them on the Associations global online platform IWA-connect to get involved or learn more about water activities planned for the upcoming years.

Photo: The Founders of YWP Serbia from left to right: Stevo Lavrnić , Mladenka Novaković, Dr Maja Sremački, and Mirko Jevtić.

Connect directly with the founders and committee members of YWP Serbia.

Dr Stevo Lavrnić –Chair of the YWP chapter –  is an environmental engineer whose research activities focus on wastewater treatment and reuse, particularly on Nature-based Solutions such as constructed wetlands. He works on different national and international projects that deal with sustainable water management as a component of circular economy.

Mladenka Novaković – Committee member of YWP chapter -is currently pursuing her PhD degree. Her research interests are analysis of organic micro-pollutants in municipal wastewater and landfill leachate, advanced wastewater technologies, treatment of municipal wastewater and landfill leachate, application of new nanostructured materials in removal of organic pollutants from water media and water quality monitoring.

Dr Maja Sremački – Committee member of YWP chapter – is an environmental engineer whose research activities focus on wastewater characterisation and treatment, particularly advanced oxidation processes. She works on national and international projects on sustainable water management, wastewater treatment possibilities in the context of water reuse, energy recovery and circular economy.

Mirko Jevtić, – Committee member of YWP chapter – works as a Process Engineer for a design-engineering company in Serbia, spending most of his time designing water and wastewater treatment plants. He is especially interested in aerobic granular sludge and dynamic process simulation of WWTPs.