PECSRL Conference 2016, Innsbruck/Austria

Session 8: New (agrarian) activities in historic mountain landscapes
By Alexandra Kruse, Csaba Centeri, Hans Renes, Maurizia Sigura & Jana Špuleróva

Mountain landscapes have proven to be sustainable and resilient, particularly because they could adapt to ever new functions. In the course of time, farmers have managed to survive by product-innovation and by finding new markets. Nowadays, the situation is different as the landscape is no longer only a result of human activities, but is also an aim in itself. Different stakeholders, including national and regional governments, farmers’ organisations and tourists and their organisations, try to preserve historic mountain landscapes for reasons of aesthetics, leisure, biodiversity and rural society.
The present situation shows a varied picture. Some mountain regions are quite successful, often by combining agriculture with rural tourism and by supplying high quality products (slow food) to regional or even international markets. Other mountain areas find it increasingly difficult to maintain agricultural ways of life and a viable population density.
In this session we want to look at different strategies, in particular connected to agriculture, that European mountain regions are developing to preserve mountain landscapes by finding new economic bases.