In 2011, the City of Salem and the North Santiam Watershed Council asked Oregon Consensus to conduct a neutral assessment of the potential for collaborative approaches to water management in the North Santiam Basin. The North Santiam River serves a broad variety of water needs including municipal water supply, irrigation, recreation, and ecological services for aquatic life (including endangered species). Assessment interviews of parties representing diverse perspectives indicated a collaborative process would be appropriate. Additional assessment clarified whether or how the process could be integrated with other efforts underway. In response to the assessment report, the City of Salem, the North Santiam Watershed Council and other partners held a summit to initiate creation of an emergency action plan for the North Santiam basin.