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Culture 2000

European Union


Meetings & Seminars

Meetings and seminars are the traditional, and still most important forum for of communication within a group. The meetings are thus defined as internal communication, mainly directed towards discussing the needs and particular aspects of the participating partners. Seminars shall encourage the communication with external experts, bringing extra expertise into the project group. Seminars shall allow a dialogue with experts on laws, management etc. to find intelligent solutions for complex problems. In accordance to the major themes Understanding, Communication and Sustainable Management three forums of two meetings or seminars each have been established. The first three conferences will be meetings of the project partners, where a GIS producer might also be invited to the GIS meeting, to give expert advice. The three following meetings will be seminars, with experts on tourism, management and development and heritage and ecological law in Europe attending. These seminars shall not only provide information and expert knowledge to the partners, but also help set up a dialogue with special interest groups, involved in the management and exploitation of cultural landscapes.


1) Research / Characterisation

The meeting will deal with basic questions of research on cultural landscape, especially their characterisation as a first and vital step in the process of studying and understanding these landscapes. Very different approaches have developed in various countries and the present situation differs quite a lot. Such an exchange is therefore very important to assure that all partners mean the same things when talking to each other. The exchange of data will be prepared and standards laid out.

2) GIS

GIS is a major tool for studying and modelling the cultural landscape. It is the basis of all research in the cultural landscape today, although international standards are still lacking and the methods can differ significantly. It is not only a tool for research, but also for exchange and communication. The role of GIS for informing the public or drawing models in planning and developing is quite different in the participating countries. Here an exchange of experience will be very important. Establishing and standardising possibilities for linking and transferring databanking systems is vital for GIS related research and presentation of the results.


3) Intellectual virtual access to the cultural landscape

Access to cultural landscapes can be physical or intellectual, the latter mainly being a virtual access. Means of virtual access can range from public access via internet, provate home computer via CD presentation to stationary instalments in museums or information centres. It is especially useful when enabling access to landscapes, which are difficult to approach, e.g. bogs, private property or highly protected areas. Virtual access therefore deals with communicating results to a broad public and presenting "hard-to-access" parts of the cultural landscape.

4) Physical access to the cultural landscape (including cultural tourism)

Physical access is to be ensured by signs, folders and the establishment of cultural paths in the landscape. To enable physical access and especially to maintain the infrastructure and gain public interest, means of physical access must be attractive for use - especially by tourists. This will ensure the economic benefit of the region through the research work on cultural landscapes. Cultural tourism - or intelligent tourism, as it was called more recently -, therefore is an important medium for the management of cultural landscapes and in establishing a balance between their exploitation and preservation and conservation.

Intelligent / Sustainable Management

5) Positive Management (sustainable use of the cultural landscape)

Positive management of the cultural landscape includes cultural tourism, which is of course part of the use of cultural landscapes. But also farming, forestry and other ways of exploitation need to be taken into account. Traditional exploitation is vital for preserving the cultural landscape as it is or was but modern methods and high profit thinking are currently endangering the cultural landscape. Here a balance must be found to allow sustainable management, with both economic perspectives for the local people as well as means of preserving the cultural landscape while "using" it.

6) Reactive Management (protection and preservation)

The traditional approach of heritage and nature protection will be necessary to preserve parts of the cultural landscape as well. How to define highly protected areas, how to protect them and finding a balance with economic and other social needs will be the main theme of this last seminar. This seminar in 2003 will also be used as the final forum for summing up the results of the foregoing meetings and seminars and preparing the final proceedings.

design: Kai M. Wurm
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