Journal of Mountain Science

, Volume 13, Issue 1, pp 169–182 | Cite as

Integrated development planning in mountainous areas - the case of Konitsa, Greece

  • Vaios KotsiosEmail author


In the research literature, we have identified a lack of common understanding of the “development” concept. The meaning of development has changed over the last decades from referencing simple economic growth to embracing social and environmental concerns. The aim of this paper is to highlight the Worth-living Integrated Development theory (WID) in the context of postgraduate education and interdisciplinarity. In particular, through the description of three research projects undertaken within the interdisciplinary postgraduate programme “Environment and Development of Mountainous Areas” of the National Technical University of Athens, the methodology of WID applied to the Greek mountain area of Konitsa is presented. In the first step of the methodology, the recent development strategies enacted by the municipality of Konitsa were compared with the principles and the values of WID. This was done to document the necessity of an integrated development process. In the second step, the investigating parameters and indicators were selected and then bibliographically and empirically researched following extensive discussions within the interdisciplinary team. In the third step, the data were analyzed to highlight the problems, the objective and the “potential” development opportunities, as well as the objective constraints on the Integrated Development of the study area. In the fourth step, a combination of bottom-up and top-down approaches was followed by interdisciplinary workgroups for the formulation and documentation of alternative scenarios for Integrated Development. In the fifth step, a set of criteria was described to allow residents to evaluate the proposed development actions and choose the optimal development policies for the Municipality of Konitsa. Finally, a set of principles and values was clarified to help residents speak out and reject actions or policies that might lower their living standards. The results of each methodological step and the integrated development approach for the region of Konitsa can be used as an important tool in the planning, development and support of relevant policies.


Integrated development Interdisciplinarity Postgraduate studies Mountain development Greece 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Andreopoulos D, Damigos D, Comiti F, et al. (2015) Estimating the non-market benefits of climate change adaptation of river ecosystem services: A choice experiment application in the Aoos basin, Greece. Environmental Science and Policy 45: 92–103. DOI:10.1016/j.envsci.2014.10.003CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Ayre M, Nettle R (2015) Doing integrationin catchment management research: insights into a dynamic learning process. Environmental Science and Policy 47: 18–31. DOI:10.1016/j.envsci.2014.10.011CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Buanes A, Jentoft S (2009) Building bridges: Institutional perspectives on interdisciplinarity. Futures 41: 446–454. DOI:10.1016/j.futures.2009.01.010CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Chatzinikolaou Y, Dakos V, Lazaridou M (2008) Assessing the Ecological Integrity of a Major Transboundary Mediterranean River Based on Environmental Habitat Variables and Benthic Macroinvertebrates (Aoos-Vjose River, Greece-Albania). International Review of Hydrobiology 93(1): 73–87. DOI: 10.1002/iroh.200610937CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. European Environment Agency (2000) CORINE Land Cover. Technical guidelines. Available online: http://www.eea. (Accessed on 1 July 2013)Google Scholar
  6. European Union (2012) Regulation no. 1151 /21.dec.2012 on quality schemes for agricultural products and foodstuffs (published in the Official Journal number 343L /14 December). Available online: (Accessed on 1 June 2013)Google Scholar
  7. Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (2007) Sustainable Agriculture and Rural Development in Mountain Regions. Project (SARD-M) Mediterranean Region. Brief Summary. Available online: (Accessed on 10 May 2012)Google Scholar
  8. Frank, A, Mironowicz I, Lourenço M, et al. (2014) Educating planners in Europe: A review of 21st century study programmes. Progress in Planning, 91: 30–94. DOI: 10.1016/j.progress.2013.05.001CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Friedmann J (2011) Insurgencies: Essays in Planning Theory. Routledge, New York, USA. pp 60–86.Google Scholar
  10. Hellenic Statistical Authority (2011) Database for the national census. Available online: (Accessed on 20 May 2013).Google Scholar
  11. Hopwood B, Mellor M, O’Brien G (2005) Sustainable Development: mapping different approaches. Sustainable Development 13: 38–52. DOI: 10.1002/sd.244CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Kassioumis K, Papageorgiou K, Christodoulou A, et al. (2004) Rural development by afforestation in predominantly agricultural areas: issues and challenges from two areas in Greece. Forest Policy and Economics 6: 483–496. DOI: S1389-9341(02)00079-5CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Martinussen J (1999) Society, state and market: a guide to competing theories of development. Zed Books, London, UK.Google Scholar
  14. Milne MJ (1996) On sustainability: the environment and management accounting. Management Accounting Research 7(1):135–161. DOI:10.1006/mare.1996.0007CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Mitchley J, Price M, Tzanopoulos J (2006) Integrated Futures for Europe’s Mountain Regions: Reconciling Biodiversity Conservation and Human Livelihoods. Journal of Mountain Science 3(4): 276–286. DOI: 10.1007/s11629-006-0276-5CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Nirta G, Bortolotti V, Chiari M, et al. (2010) Ophiolites from the Grammos-Arrenes area, Northern Greece—geological, paleontological and geochemical data. Ofioliti 35(2): 103–115.Google Scholar
  17. Nitsiakos V, Mantzos K (2008) Migration and National Borders. Albanian migrants to Greece: a local case. In: Nitsiakos V et al. (eds.), Balkan Border Crossings: First Annual of the Konitsa Summer School. Lit Verlag, Berlin, Germany. pp. 252–277.Google Scholar
  18. Papageorgiou K, Kassioumis K, Blioumis V, et al. (2005) Linking quality of life and forest values in rural areas: an exploratory study of stakeholder perspectives in the rural community of Konitsa, Greece. Forestry 78(5): 485–499. DOI:10.1093/forestry/cpi049CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Quaddus MA, Siddique MAB (2001) Modelling sustainable development planning: A multicriteria decision conferencing approach. Environment International 27: 89–95. DOI: 10.1016/S0160-4120(01)00066-6CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Rafols I, Porter A, Leydesdorff L (2010) Science overlay maps: a new tool for research policy and library management. Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology 61(9): 1871–1887. DOI: 10.1002/asi.21368CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Reci H, Tsokas G, Papazachos C, et al. (2001) Study of the crossborder geothermal field in the Sarandoporos-Konitsa area by electrical soundings. Journal of The Balkan Geophysical Society 4(2): 19–28.Google Scholar
  22. Rokos D (2003) From sustainable to Worthliving Integrated Development. Livanis Publications, Athens, Greece. (In Greek)Google Scholar
  23. Rokos D (2007) The Integrated Development of Epirus. Problems, Potentials, Limitations. In: Proceedings of the 4th Interdisciplinary Conference of the National Technical University of Athens and Metsovion Interdisciplinary Research Center on The Integrated Development of Epirus, Metsovo, 23-26 September 2004, pp. 138–153. (In Greek)Google Scholar
  24. Schönthaler K, Werburg S (2006) DIAMONT Data Infrastructure for the Alps /Mountain Orientated Network Technology. INTERREG III B Alpine Space. Available online at: (Accessed on 25 May 2013)Google Scholar
  25. Schuurman F (1993) Introduction: development theory in the 1990s. In: Schuurman F.J. (ed.), Beyond the Impasse: New Directions in Development Theory. Zed Books, London, UK. pp 1–48.Google Scholar
  26. Steiner G, Posch A (2006) Higher education for sustainability by means of transdisciplinary case studies: an innovative approach for solving complex, real-world problems. Journal of Cleaner Production 14: 877–890. DOI: 10.1016/j.jclepro. 2005.11.054CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Strid A (1995) The Greek mountain flora, with special reference to the Central European element. Bocconea 5: 99–112.Google Scholar
  28. Sumner A, Tribe M (2008) International Development Studies Theories and Methods in Research and Practice. SAGE Publications, London, UK.Google Scholar
  29. Tsiafouli M, Apostolopoulou E, Mazaris A, et al. (2013) Human Activities in Natura 2000 Sites: A Highly Diversified Conservation Network. Environmental Management 51: 1025–1033. DOI: 10.1007/s00267-013-0036-6CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Tzanopoulos J, Kallimanis A, Bellac I, et al. (2011) Agricultural decline and sustainable development on mountain areas in Greece: Sustainability assessment of future scenarios. Land Use Policy 28: 585–593. DOI: 10.1016/j.landusepol.2010. 11.007CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Van der Ploeg JD, Van Broekhuizen R, Brunori G, et al. (2008) Towards a framework for understanding regional rural development. In: van der Ploeg JD, Marsden T (eds.), Unfolding Webs: the Dynamics of Regional Rural Development. Van Gorcum, Assen. pp 1–28.Google Scholar
  32. Wagner CS, Roessner JD, Bobb K, et al. (2011) Approaches to understanding and measuring interdisciplinary scientific research (IDR): A review of the literature. Journal of Informetrics 5(1): 14–26. DOI:10.1016/j.joi.2010.06.004CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. World Commission on Environment and Development (WCED) (1987) Our Common Future. Oxford University Press, Oxford, UK.Google Scholar
  34. Zografou K, Sfenthourakis S, Pullin A, Kati V (2009) On the surrogate value of red-listed butterflies for butterflies and grasshoppers: a case study in Grammos site of Natura 2000, Greece. Journal of Insect Conservation 13: 505–514. DOI: 10.1007/s10841-008-9198-6CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Zomeni M, Tzanopoulos J, Pantis J (2008) Historical analysis of landscape change using remote sensing techniques: An explanatory tool for agricultural transformation in Greek rural areas. Landscape and Urban Planning 86: 38–46. DOI: 10.1016/j.landurbplan.2007.12.006CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Science Press, Institute of Mountain Hazards and Environment, CAS and Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Metsovion Interdisciplinary Research CenterNational Technical University of Athens, Building of Technical ServiceAthensGreece

Personalised recommendations