Landscape identity and students awareness. An example of participation in landscape research (Piedmont, ITALY)

Authors and Affiliations: 

Federica Larcher1*, Paola Gullino1

1DISAFA, University of Turin, Largo Braccini 2, Grugliasco, ITALY

Corresponding author: 
Federica Larcher

The restoration and conservation of traditional rural landscapes is considered a priority at international and national level. Maintaining traditional features of agricultural activity and adopting a sustainable approach are imperative tools. Fruit growing is an example of traditional cultivation practiced in Cuneo Province (Piedmont Region, ITALY). In order to preserve and safeguard fruit growing as a traditional rural system, a multidisciplinary study was carried out. The research analysed alternatives for the restoration of historical orchard systems and proposed an innovative approach for maintaining traditional values and forecasting future land use changes. With the aim to analyse students’ awareness concerning the driving forces and transformations affecting the traditional fruit landscape, a participatory study was performed. Five student workshops were organised. A number of 295 local students (13 years old) affiliated with 5 different Lower Secondary Schools located in the South of Piedmont were consulted. During student’s workshops, landscape elements linked to fruit landscape and changes factors were identified and future landscape scenarios were forecasted. Orchard features (flowering of fruit trees in the spring period, fruit tree disposition in rows and mechanisation), the presence of buildings (castles, rural buildings and shed and storerooms), land morphology (geological and climate aspects) and irrigation system (artificial and natural) are considered the most representative landscape features that characterized fruit growing. Regarding the future of fruit landscapes, several change factors were identified by students, as pollution, urban sprawl, and climate change. This experience contributes to understand more about the landscape perception of the young generation in the studied area and to promote the landscape culture in their schools and families.



Oral or poster: 
Oral presentation