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Gloria Pugnetti and Alexandra Kruse, European Culture expressed in Agricultural Landscape - Perspectives from the Eucaland Project

AlmaTourism N.3, 2011: Gloria Pugnetti and Alexandra Kruse, European Culture expressed in
Agricultural Landscape - Perspectives from the Eucaland Project
Since the thirties of the XX century to nowadays, the concept of “monument” and “cultural
heritage” itself significantly evolved, extending its range from the single and circumscribed
item, to a whole context and/or geographic area.
The idea of “monument” moved from its initial meaning of exceptional and exemplar work of
art to the value as “storage of material memory”, allowing this way a more extended group
of significant and sensitive cases to be admitted to this category, widening their perspectives
and possibilities in terms of protection and development.
The UNESCO World Heritage Convention of 1972 signed a milestone within this discipline,
stressing the world-wide value and responsibility of cultural heritage and finally pointing out
the relevance of landscape as human legacy, then confirmed and enhanced by the European
Landscape Convention of 2000. Finally the discipline came to agricultural landscapes,
detected as fundamental source of identity, primary mean of support for economical and
social development, actual living know-how archive and mirror of the historical relationship
between the physical features of a place and the human community living within it.
Through the years the awareness and interest toward landscape and cultural heritage
increased, involving a growing number of partners and nations (thirty-nine countries adhered
at now to the European Landscape Convention) and giving rise to several experiences,
programs, studies as on local as on international scale, which produced a variety of charters,
documents and policies.
The European Union and the United Nations did much about the preservation of landscape,
significantly contributing to the development of its interdisciplinary feature; after over thirty
years of activity and research, the multiplicity of methods and results needed to be collected
and arranged in a more organic view which could allow a comparison and a balance of what
has been achieved until now and which are the possible perspectives and scenarios.
The Eucaland (EUropean Culture expressed in Agricultural LANDscapes) Project was been
developed with this specific purpose, investigating thirteen European countries since 2007
to 2009. The approach to the issue started from ideally breaking up the activity on
agricultural landscapes in six fundamental steps, which cover the discipline from its
conceptual bases to the outputs dissemination. The project has been, this way, arranged in
teams, dedicated to the investigation on specific topics: 1. landscape description, 2.
landscape history, 3. landscape classification, 4. landscape assessment and policy, 5.
landscape planning, 6. dissemination. The structure of the books itself traces and follows the
Eucaland Project’s one.
E-mail address:
Contents liste available at Cib.Unibo
Gloria Pugnetti and Alexandra Kruse,
European Culture expressed in Agricultural
Landscape - Perspectives from the Eucaland
Gola, A.
Decolonizing Architecture, Jerusalem (Palestine)
AlmaTourism N.3, 2011: Gloria Pugnetti and Alexandra Kruse, European Culture expressed in
Agricultural Landscape - Perspectives from the Eucaland Project
The Landscape description focuses on the conceptual an theoretical bases of agricultural
landscape in its meaning of common heritage with social and cultural value, reporting its
components, the psychological and social influences on human well-being and the
perspectives of development for the future. The following topic bases on agricultural
landscape as deposit of historical memory, which face is shaped by the social and cultural
development within a geographic contest; this section compares the different evolution of
agricultural landscapes across Europe, highlighting and interpreting constants and
differences among the development of human societies. The landscape classification ideally
works as intermediate phase of arrangement and interpretation of the results from the two
previous parts, outlining families of landscapes interpreted as product of history.
The last three categories pertain to the more operative implication of the subject, surveying
administrative, operative and communicative activities. The research on landscape
assessment and policies investigated what at now produced by international institutions
(UNESCO, ICOMOS, IUCN) and European Union: what is interesting to point out, is that
currently still no single document has been dedicated to the specific issue of agricultural
landscape, which is still present in a fragmented way in several indications and policies issued
by various institutional sectors. The assessment of landscape planning activities aims to
recapitulate the Eucaland Project partners’ situation about the level of sensitivity and
awareness reached by institutions, actors and local communities, tested through direct
interviews and best practice experiences. The dissemination of results constitutes the final,
but still fundamental part of the Eucaland Project: as for any other program, the survey of
outputs and a activities of popularization verifies in which measure the chance for exchanges
and improvements of ideas, awareness, strategies and partnerships is caught.
The volume European Culture expressed in Agricultural Landscapes - Perspectives from the
Eucaland Project constitutes a report and a commentary to the final outcomes of the project
itself, a very meaningful operation which embodies not only a concrete occasion for
arranging organically and synthesise the huge amount of information risen from the
program, but also a valued effort of dissemination of what is considered the very last update
about the doctrine of agricultural landscape in Europe.
Especially the parts dedicated by Eucaland Project and the book itself to landscape
assessment and policy and landscape planning pointed out the non-homogeneity of terms,
definitions and goals between the various signing parts: this fact embodies a potential source
of misunderstanding and criticality which should be faced and developed in order to create a
shared ground and vocabulary for the future negotiations and international initiatives.
Because of the fast but also somehow scrambled evolution the relatively young discipline of
agricultural landscape is currently living, such kind of publication looks particularly
meaningful and commendable, since as it works as effective update addressed to a
variegated international audience.
The choice of the authors for a very neat and linear register and an efficient and clear index
arrangement looks particularly correct and makes this publication more forceful, structuring
a huge amount of notions and examples in an accessible way. The arrangement of the
themes recalls somehow the idea of a manual or guide: the structure of the chapters makes
actually possible to consult directly specific aspects of the agricultural landscape doctrine and
its onset in the various regions of Europe.
The volume aims to take stock of the current situation after the Eucaland Project not just in
order to picture the achieved goals, but most of all to render a chiaroscuro portrait of
potentials, lacks and critical points that could contribute envisioning future strategies and
The reading of this book hands not simply a clear ensemble of notions and information, but
also interesting proactive cues for further actions within and between various sectors, since
much still has to be done for a proper development of the agricultural landscape discipline.
... Spatial structure", we describe the general patterns which emerge from these subdivisions of the agricultural systems. We have classified landscape characteristics, also taking into account the method proposed in the European project "Eucaland" concerning the classification of European agricultural landscapes (Pungetti and Kruse, 2010). ...
The implementation of the European Landscape Convention has paved the way for innovative tools able to analyse scattered and medium-small size elements, far beyond the usual isolated relevant landmarks. In this context, planners have been confronted with the problem of defining those characteristics of rural landscapes which are typical of agricultural and forestry activities and ecosystems. The specific focus on rural landscapes has attracted the interest of international scientists. They have approached the question from many perspectives, but have rarely analysed the interplay between landscapes, buildings, and settlements. In this paper we design and apply a method which is able to define, analyse and plan built-up rural landscapes. This method is based on organizing qualitative and quantitative landscape information in fact sheets, a tool that was often used in the last generation of landscape atlases in Italy. We have investigated three landscape units in Sardinia, Italy, one of the first administrations to approve a regional landscape plan which conformed with the European Landscape Convention. Our evidence demonstrates that the method is powerful, as it helps in the identification of the main characteristics of each rural built-up landscape and the drafting of general planning propositions. In particular, the method proves useful in stressing the cross-fertilization between building types and the shape of the rural landscapes: single story buildings on plains and multi-story buildings in mountainous areas. While the method is clearly influenced by the European Landscape Convention and the Italian local regulations, it is based on general principles and can be applied, with proper adaptations, to other cases worldwide.
... Aesthetic criteria of the landscape's quality assessment is today largely incorporated into landscape and spatial planning documentations (Rogge et al 2007), and definition of cultural heritage in planning practice is developed from material entities to intangible values, which represent specific relations of the human society to its historical territory (Pungetti et al 2010). Using the presented method we can observe tangible and structural attributes of landscape, as well as inner functions, processes and axiological attributes. ...
... ELC is the first international treaty which involves maintenance and preservation of all types of landscape, non-conservative preservation of characteristic features in landscape types and definition of final landscape quality with public co-operation. Contemporary planners use wider definition of landscape heritage, which includes tangible or intangible elements that demonstrate the particular relationship a human community has established with a territory over time (Pungetti, Kruse, 2010). The most important law that concentrates on HLS and characteristic features preservation in Slovakia is the Act of National Council of the Slovak Republic No. 543/2002 Coll. ...
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Valuable historical rural landscapes are found in the sub-mountainous and mountainous regions of the Carpathian Mountains in Slovakia. Authors contributed to the research about historical landscape structures (HLS) by several methods. Method of ‘identification and assessment of characteristic landscape’ was developed in order to provide maintenance to about HLS and improve application of responsibilities resulting from the European Landscape Convention (Florence, 2000) into practice of landscape planning. We bring a new perspective on landscape’s value identification in the field of landscape ecology. The main aim of the paper is identification of HLS as components of land cover structures in the cadastral area of Budina (agrarian terraces) and as micro-relief forms in Nižná Boca (mines). Studied areas represent two different rural landscape types which contain different values related to HLS and they are not especially protected by laws. We evaluate attributes of relief, visual-optometric parameters of landscape, landscape types, land cover structures and types of HLS. Maintenance about HLS in landscape is important for the preservation of unique types of cultural landscapes. Finally, we compare realisations of the visions, suggested in previous landscape studies, which concentrated on development of tourism in the studied areas.
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In 2011, the ICOMOS-IFLA International Scientific Committee on Cultural Landscapes (ISCCL) began the World Rural Landscapes Initiative (WRLI) project to develop a complete and systematic approach to cultural heritage for rural areas. Rural landscapes need further study in terms of methodology, operation and internationally recognised documents: protection and promotion, knowledge, methodology and management at international, national and local levels. The goals of the WRLI were: a principles text containing theoretical, methodological and operational criteria; a website; a glossary; an atlas of rural landscapes; and a general bibliography. The first goal has been achieved: Principles Concerning Rural Landscapes as Heritage was adopted as a doctrinal text by ICOMOS (2017). This paper presents the main cultural premises and contents of the Principles text: (I) the theoretical concepts of the ‘Rural Landscape’ and ‘Rural Landscape as Heritage’; and (II) ‘Action criteria’ which guide the development of policies for rural landscapes as heritage and resources: knowledge, protection, sustainable management, communication and transmission of physical places and associated heritage values. This paper covers: the importance of time in policy strategy; the (false) contradiction of conservation and innovation and the concept of ‘appropriate’ transformation; the role of stakeholders; value recognition; knowledge; information; communication and public reception.
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Despite that there are no specific policies intended to preserve or manage the cultural value of agricultural landscapes in Slovakia, several national policy and legal documents are at least partially focused on historical agricultural landscapes, their conservation, management, and landscape planning. Some criteria for the evaluation of historical agricultural landscapes that are defined by legislative documentation include their cultural heritage value and significant landscape elements. Other criteria, such as characteristic landscape, architectural-technical elements, and agricultural land use elements are defined from a scientific point of view. However, many of the terms are unclear and undefined, and they can be treated differently by different stakeholders or groups of users. Therefore, other evaluation criteria and characteristics of historical agricultural landscapes, such as land value and cultural and natural value, should be clearly defined and incorporated in legislative documents. The first step to evaluation is knowledge about the current distribution of historical agricultural landscapes in Slovakia. A methodology for mapping historical structures of agricultural landscapes was developed in this study. The primary characteristics of historical agricultural landscapes were also studied, including the composition of land use elements, the definition of degree of land use, and the forms of anthropogenic relief and their features.
The interactions between natural, cultural and spiritual components of landscape, and the values that people associate with them, are key elements to landscape research based on both ecological and cultural principles. The understanding of these interactions and values is an essential prerequisite for the healthy and sustainable management of our planet. Such understanding can be achieved through research on biocultural diversity, meant as the diversity of life on earth in both nature and culture. This paper explores recent developments in ecological landscape research to support biocultural diversity, and offers a new approach based on biocultural landscape.
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Historical structures of the agricultural landscape (HSAL) hold a special position among historical landscape structures. The HSA Linventory in Slovakia aimed at country side mapping entitled"Research and maintaining of biodiversity in historical structures of agricultural landscape of Slovakia". This was established to provide newknowledge of HSAL distribution and conditions in Slovakia. The HSAL database provides outcomes of field mapping and identification of HSAL and their classification throughout Slovakia.The sum of 626 HSAL polygons was recorded in the field, and a total of 3033 polygons were identified as HSAL based on aerial photos. From a land use viewpoint, 4 classes of HSAL were distinguished under the following classificationscheme: (1) Historical structures of the agricultural landscape with dispersed settlement, (2) Historical structures of vineyards' landscape, (3) Historical structures of arable-land, grasslands and orchards and (4) Historical structures of arable-land and grasslands. The most frequent classes encountered are the Historical structures of arable-land and grasslands, and then the HSAL with dispersed settlement.
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In recent years, peri-urban agricultural landscapes are gradually receiving significant support in the context of five main fields. The first is from the European Landscape Convention (ELC), since its Article 2 refers not only to outstanding landscapes but also to everyday or even degraded landscapes. A second support is provided by the field of cultural heritage and cultural landscape, connecting the role of agricultural landscapes to patrimonial values. The understanding of landscape as heritage is quite recent and it is connected to the evolution of the heritage concept itself towards ideas such as the “heritagisation of territories and landscapes”. Within this frame, agricultural landscapes are actually being considered as an important part of European heritage. Multifunctionality of agriculture and landscape offers a third approach to strengthen agricultural landscapes based on their role of developing multiple functions and their corresponding economic, ecological and sociocultural services. From the field of protected areas, the advances in its conception and role is leading to an inspirational framework to be applied beyond the traditional boundaries of this body, giving new opportunities to link nature protection and landscape, including agricultural landscapes, which are recognised in some cases as important ecosystems and biodiversity foci. Finally, from a spatial planning viewpoint, different instruments could offer specific solutions to protect and promote vegas and deltas
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