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Selected Publication:

Penker, M.
(2009): Landscape governance for or by the local population? A property rights analysis in Austria
LAND USE POLICY. 2009; 26(4): 947-953. FullText FullText_BOKU

Diverse and unique landscapes not only are one of the key assets of Austrian tourism industry, but are also highly valued for local identity, quality of life and their ecological functions. Society tries to prevent unintended landscape change and thereby purposefully intervenes in landscape development by countless environmental regulations, contracts with landholders, agri-environmental schemes, landscape and nature reserves, food-related activities such as 'eat the view' and labels of origin. In the face of increasing state control and the growing influence of (inter-) nationally acting civil society groups, the paper poses the question whether the local population still has a saying in the governance of their landscape. Is it the local people, their costumes and institutions that shape the diversity and uniqueness of landscapes (i.e., the 'root meaning of landscape' [OIwig, K.R., 2002. Landscape, Nature, and the Body Politic. From Britain's Renaissance to America's New World. The University of Wisconsin Press, Madison.]) or is local peculiarity lost to national or international landscape control? The paper analyses the changing structures of use and control rights to Austrian landscapes and resulting shifts between locally driven and centrally controlled landscape change. The paper is a meta-analysis of ten empirically founded interdisciplinary research projects on cultural landscapes in Austria. The results are compared with international literature that indicates a loss of control of the local rural population over their natural resources. In the Austrian case however, the local population (re-) negotiates and (re-) interprets complex and conflicting international and state regulations according to their respective needs before concretizing them in actual land use practises. Some participation projects and self-governed local civic society movements integrate non-land holders. In few of homogenisation forces such as CAP and international regulations, diverse and unique landscapes call for the involvement of the local preferences, traditions, knowledge and skills-of both local non-landholders and landholders. (C) 2008 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Authors BOKU Wien:
Penker Marianne

Find related publications in this database (Keywords)
Property rights
Local population

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