Problems and Purpose
The strategic objective is the defense and redevelopment of the mountain landscapes and territories of the Umbra Valley mountain (Foligno, Trevi and Sellano) where we are witnessing the depopulation of inhabited areas and scattered houses, also the deterioration of the building structures themselves. and the abandonment of agricultural land and therefore the progressive disintegration of the traditional historical landscape (Link 1).
The project was implemented on the initiative of the local communities of the area, in full coherence with the strategic line for the definition of sustainable landscape development strategies pursued by the Umbria Region in its territorial governance policies (Link 1).
Specifically, it is a matter of defining a medium-long term strategic scenario and an interinstitutional memorandum of understanding, which can outline a landscape program, for the development of the territories of competence, inspired by the highly innovative principles of the European Convention on the Landscape of 2000. (Del.Giunta.Reg. N. 1005 of 30/07/2012).
Background History and Context
The initiative started in 2012, from a voluntary and participatory choice on the initiative of the Agricultural Community of Cancelli, the Agricultural Community of Ponze, the Agricultural University of Coste and the Agricultural University of Orsano, together with the Municipalities of Trevi, Sellano and Foligno and the Parish of Sant'Eraclio-Cancellara.
These subjects wanted to bring the reality of the mountain to the attention of the regional administration, affected in recent years by a series of criticalities such as the depopulation of inhabited areas and scattered houses and the deterioration of existing building structures with consequent progressive disintegration of the historical landscape. -traditional (link 1).
The Municipalities / Agricultural Universities are associations of farmers who enjoy particular benefits linked to the use of agricultural and forest land. Residents of the hamlet for at least 5 years participate in the community. The Community / Agricultural University is made up of a board of directors, a president, a secretary and an assembly of users. Users use the grazing lands, woodlands, buildings and shelters. They have their own statute which indicates the purposes of the same, the means to survive, the patrimony, the administration, the rights and the fines. Owned land is subject to civic use: civic uses are the rights of a community (and its members), organized and established on a territory, whose content consists in benefiting from the land, woods and waters. (Legislative Decree 42/2004 - art.142 - letter h - Link 1).
The Municipality of Foligno is an artisan center and an important railway and road junction. In fact, its population has always grown from the end of the 1800s to today, passing from 20,000 inhabitants to 58,000. The foreign presence, which has grown considerably in the last 10 years, reaches 12%. The Municipality of Trevi is a small municipality of 8,300 inhabitants (4,700 in 1871). Sellano has 1,140 residents (there were 3,118 in 1921). The first two municipalities have the main nuclei with immediate access from the main road and railway communication routes, while their rural territory is, like that of Sellano, in more remote and more difficult to access areas. The seismicity of the soils (the area was affected by the violent earthquake of 1997) then contributed to a further reduction in settlement attractiveness.
The political tradition, like the average one in Umbria, is center-left.
Organizing, Supporting, and Funding Entities
The promoters of the initiative are: the Agricultural Community of Cancelli, the Agricultural Community of Ponze, the Agricultural University of Coste and the Agricultural University of Orsano, the Municipalities of Trevi, Sellano and Foligno and the Parish of Sant'Eraclio-Cancellara (the pastoral unit includes numerous parishes and some of these fall within the landscape of reference).
In accepting the proposal of the municipalities and agricultural communities concerned, as an experimental and replicable activity also in other territorial contexts, the regional council, with its own resolution, established the interinstitutional working table, with the aim of elaborating a territorial development strategy and landscape redevelopment of the aforementioned territories. The owner for the Umbria Region is the Councilor for the Environment, Territory, Infrastructure and Transport (Link 1).
The Giannantoni studio (associated agronomic technical studio) and Andrea Pochini's architectural - landscape - urban planning studio oversaw the process.
Most of the cost of the project is attributable to the work of the technicians (elaboration of the cognitive framework and production of maps) but there is no information regarding the cost of the assignment entrusted to external technicians.
Participant Recruitment and Selection
In addition to the representatives of the promoters and institutions (see Promoters and financiers), the following were involved (Link 1):
- the professionals (architects, agronomists) curators of the project, in the elaboration of the cognitive framework, in the surveys relating to the collection of the starting data (cognitive framework) as well as in the conduct of the participatory phases.
- inhabitants / residents of the communities of Orsano (n.9 participants overall), Cancelli (n.20 pc), Ponze (n.17 pc) and Coste (n.19 pc) in the meetings for the preparation and elaboration of community maps that were held at the offices of the communities and municipalities (link 1, community maps). The role and categories of the participants in the meetings are not specified, although a survey of the participants was also carried out through a questionnaire, where only the age and place of residence were reported.
- representatives of local economic actors both in the elaboration of the maps and in the valorisation actions
- university professors, officials of the region and local authorities, institutional representatives (invited with scheduled intervention) and the general public (through free access - there are no details on the communication-advertising adopted) during the Landscape and Geography Forum 2014 (on 27/10 ) which was held in the Sala dei Notari, in the Palazzo dei Priori in Perugia, where the landscape agreement and the program of actions were signed. The event was organized as a conference with scheduled interventions by institutional representatives and academic experts.
Methods and Tools Used
In addition to language, the landscape is an element of strong local social identification, therefore linked to the sharing of the values and aspirations of a community in a territory. A source of inspiration and work tool - also used in the case in question - for the reappropriation of the sense of place that globalization threatens more and more, are the Community Maps , based on the idea of the Parish Maps , conceived in Dorset (England ), from the Common Ground organization, founded in 1983. Community Maps can be considered the formal result of a participatory process through which, a group or a network of groups discovers that they share certain solid values (fixed and solid points, not liquids) and a perspective, a sense, a direction (what to do with those values in the future? with those places?) to the point of being a community (valueholder network). This process should then induce a further awareness to demand greater public attention and therefore demand new opportunities for participation [ed].
The elaboration of the Community Maps can adopt various participatory methodologies, among which the Charrette (see Landscape Plan of Friuli Venezia Giulia ), the laboratory ( workshop ) or the discussion group (focus group ). In this case they were meetings of a few people, informal and moderated by the curators.
Also the interinstitutional working table , present in this case, is a discussion group made up of representatives of institutional authorities and actors, usually chaired and moderated by the higher geographical level body, in this case the Regional Department, which adopt an informal style of discussion and generally draw up their own minutes.
The SWOT analysis is a scheme of organization of the analysis of an object, in this case the territory under examination. SWOT means Strenght, Weakness, Opportunities, Threats that is, it frames the analysis under the strengths (eg internal resources of the territory); weaknesses (territorial limits, scarcity of resources); opportunities (favorable situations, micro and macro trends) and threats (external factors and potentially harmful situations, eg extreme climatic phenomena). The analysis can be conducted individually or shared in a group.
What Went On: Process, Interaction, and Participation
The process for the elaboration and the signing of the Landscape Contract was structured in 4 phases which alternated survey and expert elaboration with participatory phases (institutional and informal):
1. The governance of the project - Composition of the Interinstitutional Working Group and territoriality of the initiative
"In accepting the proposal of the municipalities and agricultural communities concerned, as an experimental activity that can also be replicated in other territorial contexts, the regional council, with its own resolution, set up the interinstitutional working table" [...] " Table, coordinated by the Regional Councilor for the Environment, Territory, Infrastructure and Transport, the following subjects participate: Municipality of Foligno, Municipality of Trevi, Agricultural Communities of Cancelli, Coste, Orsano and Ponze, Parish of S. Eraclio. interinstitutional is constituted not only by the aforementioned entities subscribing to the initiative, but also by the Territorial Enhancement and Landscape Protection Service and by the Forestry and Mountain Economy and Protected Areas Services, enhancement of naturalistic and landscape systems. The first meeting of the Table was held at the headquarters in Piazza Partigiani of the Umbria Region on 7 November 2012 "(Link 1 - Governance). The minutes of this meeting are not available.
2. Elaboration of the cognitive framework
"The study, conducted in 2012 and early 2013, constitutes an environmental and landscape survey of the territorial context represented by the agricultural communities of Cancelli, Coste, Orsano and Ponze. The result produced is a" photograph "of the territories, accompanied from a complex of information and data that represent their current state and the evolutionary processes that characterize them, through the identification of criticalities and environmental, agronomic, landscape and territorial values "(Link 1 - The cognitive framework). The documentation is composed of various documents, all relating to the recognition of the territory, including: the cartographic definition, the complete geographical analysis, the survey of landscape assets, the building heritage, companies, accommodation facilities, etc ... ( Ib.). The paper was edited by the external professionals in charge and by the technical offices of the Umbria Region. There is a final SWOT analysis, certainly shared among the authors, but it is not clear if and how it was elaborated with the Interinstitutional Roundtable.
3. Development of community maps
The drafting of the community map was achieved after 3 participatory activities.
3.1 - 3 information meetings, with the presentation of the cognitive framework, at the offices of the 3 municipalities involved, in the months of February and March 2013, in the presence of the Territorial Enhancement and Landscape Protection Service, promotion and coordination of community projects of the Umbria Region ( Link 1 - The community map).
3.2 - 4 participatory meetings, open to all, at the offices of the Agrarian Communities of Coste, Orsano, Ponze and Cancelli. In these meetings there were (see Selection of participants) discussion groups moderated by the curators of the process, around a table with a map of the areas concerned. For each meeting, a report was drawn up in which the problems of the areas are listed (eg degradation of the building heritage) and the prospects for enhancement (eg restoration of historic churches, building recovery for hospitality purposes, development of the collection and enhancement of truffles, organization of cultural events) and any reports missing from the cognitive framework (eg possible areas of archaeological interest).
3.3 - Survey with questionnaire. Questionnaires were distributed during the meetings; this further survey "was intended to methodologically obtain the possibility of alternating a first dialectical encounter with a second moment of personal reflection with the production of a document that goes in the sense of sharing in the choices" [...] "And In this way the aim of having answers less conditioned by collective participation and more meditated was pursued. The questionnaires were for this reason left for a few days and then withdrawn "(cit., Ib.). A document has been drawn up for each area in which the results of the questionnaires are reported. Overall, these second surveys confirm what emerged from the meetings.
3.4 - Development of community maps. In addition to the reports, the 4 community maps were composed by the curators of the route, one for each community. These maps consist of a cartography presented in regional technical style, surrounded by a gallery of photographs characteristic of the landscape of the area (see example> Map of Comunità di Coste ). The maps and all the documents are then merged into a Story Map, that is a WebGIS where the data and the proposed actions are located, which can also be followed through the temporal phases of the path taken. In the Story Map there are also videos in which photographic slides of the landscape and photos relating to some moments of the meetings with the inhabitants are mounted, but it is not a participatory WebGIS, the degree of interactivity is zero. However, the Story Map (but not the linked documents) is also translated into English (Link 2).
4. Strategic scenario elaboration.
The activity for the drafting of the strategic scenario was divided into two actions (Link 1 - The strategic scenario): 4.1 structured elaboration of: strategic economic areas, actions, actors, objectives, projects ...; 4.2 definition and verification of the elaboration structured through the comparison with the institutional table.
"The outcomes of these two actions pursued the aim of indicating, as a result of the previous phases of the work, as a preliminary matter, the objectives, projects, actions and subjects. Following the verification carried out within the interinstitutional working group, it is an action program has been defined "(Ib.).
The program of actions includes 12 initiatives, some common, others specific to a single community. For example, for Cancelli the reconstitution of a large flock of sheep, a stable and the development of dairy products, the organization of seminars and artistic workshops and a widespread hospitality project with the creation of services are planned: a restaurant, a reception, laundry, cleaning, etc ...). All are expected to improve the Internet connection and the maintenance and "development of basic and infrastructural services aimed at guaranteeing the maintenance and development of the population" (Umbria Region, 2014, p. 8).
5. Memorandum of Understanding - Landscape Agreement
"The Regional Council, with its own Resolution no. 1132 of 09.09.2014, approved the Memorandum of Understanding (Umbria Region, 2014) for the implementation of the Landscape Contract". [...] "The Protocol, signed on 27 October 2014 at the Sala dei Notari - Palazzo dei Priori Perugia, on the occasion of the 5th event organized by the Umbria Region as part of the 2014 Landscape Geography Forum on the new negotiated territorial planning tools : river contracts, landscape contracts, contains (Umbria Region, 2014): a) a summary strategic scenario, with the criticalities and development potentials of the territory b) the subscribers with their respective roles) a list of the 12 "identified actions congruous with the identified scenario "(Ib., p. 7-8). d) a commitment to monitor the implementation of the contract, with meetings - at least annually - of all the subjects involved, at the initiative of the coordinator, ie the 'Regional Department for the Environment and Territory.
Influence, Outcomes, and Effects
From the dedicated website (Link 1) there are no further updates from the signing of the Contract (rel. 20/4/2017). A sub-page (Link 1 - Promotion of the territory) reports artistic initiatives, activated in Cancelli, already in place for several years, which are periodically re-proposed. The Region coordinated and signed what emerged from the process, as did the Municipalities and the promoters. However, the implementation of the actions is largely delegated to local promoters and actors, so the Region has played a more supportive role for local self-promotion than decision-making. The recent earthquakes in the Apennine areas of Central Italy, in 2016, and in general the strong vulnerability of those territories, probably slowed down the endogenous initiatives of promotion and development, focusing the concerns of the inhabitants towards other priorities.
Analysis and Lessons Learned
It is a process of self-reflection rather than planning. The results are not in fact structured projects but a list of ideas, proposals, not very solid from the point of view of feasibility and planning. Most of the discourse developed concerned the cognitive framework, which was very thorough and perhaps too technical for the purpose of the project. The delegation to external parties and to the regional technical offices has generated a result that is not very usable from an operational point of view and perhaps too unbalanced on the representative side (see Story Map). Participation in the actual elaboration phase was exercised only in a local meeting for each area, limiting itself to a consultative approach, without further attempts to broaden the representativeness towards particular categories of inhabitants. Furthermore, there is a lack of open communication towards the potential participation of subjects outside the territories involved, given the absence of interactive web tools. The Story Map, also translated into English, probably wanted to be with this intent, but the documents (linked via links) are the same as the Italian version, so they have not been translated, and interactivity is null. In fact, it is not clear whether the objectives were to stop depopulation or promote repopulation, attracting new potential inhabitants. The reports do not clearly show this potential conflict and implicitly the first hypothesis appears more likely. It should also be noted the lack of information on updates relating to the implementation of the contract.
Umbria Region (2014), Regional Council, Department of Environment, Territory, Infrastructure and Transport, Memorandum of Understanding for the implementation of the Landscape Contract aimed at defining a strategy for territorial development and landscape requalification of the mountain territories of commonality, 'Central Apennines, between the Municipalities of Foligno and Trevi, 27 October> www.umbriapaeso.regione.umbria.it/MC-API/Risorse/StreamRisorsa.aspx?guid=d0155073-694f-4708-a579-a7ab99054788
- Umbria landscape> http: //www.umbriapascape.regione.umbria.it/pagine/contratto-di-paesagg ...
- Story Map> http://www.umbriapaismi.regione.umbria.it/cdp-TreviFolignoSellano/