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The Issue of Public Participation in the European Landscape Convention

  • Michael Jones
  • Marie Stenseke
Chapter
Part of the Landscape Series book series (LAEC, volume 13)

Abstract

The chapter introduces the European Landscape Convention (ELC) and its innovative features compared to earlier approaches to landscape. The Convention provides a new definition of landscape. It applies to all landscapes, not just selected ones, and underlines the diversity of landscapes as a value. It emphasizes that landscape is not an exclusive field for scientific and technical specialists but the concern of everybody, and advocates an enhanced role for public participation in landscape issues. Further, it highlights the principle of subsidiarity, requiring that Open image in new window landscape matters should be dealt with as closely to the affected population as possible. Next, the chapter provides a brief discussion of landscape concepts. Three prevailing notions of landscape are presented – landscape as morphology, landscape as scenery, and landscape as polity – and then the ELC’s definition of landscape as an ‘area as perceived by people’. Following this, the chapter discusses the diversity of landscapes as an important common value. Respect for and promotion of cultural diversity is part of the Council of Europe’s objective of promoting a democratic culture based on respect for law while actively involving civil society and citizens. Participation as provided for by the Aarhus Convention and followed up by the European Landscape Convention is then presented, followed by a discussion of the provisions in the ELC for implementation. The chapter concludes with a section on the ELC and participation in practice, briefly introducing the individual chapters of the book.

Keywords

Landscape definition Landscape concepts Diversity of landscapes Public participation Implementation of European Landscape Convention (ELC) 

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of GeographyNorwegian University of Science and TechnologyTrondheimNorway
  2. 2.Department of Human and Economic GeographyUniversity of GothenburgGöteborgSweden

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