Sustainability of agricultural and natural systems

Participatory approaches in management of natural resources in protected areas.


This line of research is based on the implementation of participatory processes which start from the sustainable framework and guide private and public operators involved or influenced by the management of natural resources in protected areas in defining management criteria. These approaches make use of the ICT (Information and Communication Technologies) systems integrated in multi-user platforms.

Starting: 2.01.2006
Scheduled ending: 23.09.2019
Real ending: 23.09.2019


·        To place the management of natural resources (water, soil, biodiversity) and cultural resources (landscape) within the framework of sustainability

·        To favour the identification of the stakeholders involved and/or influenced by the management of resources

·        To facilitate the identification of criteria (objectives/results/actions) for sustainable management of natural resources, aimed at formulation of  management plans for protected areas, and more generally at territorial planning

·        To provide help for planners in defining sets of indicators for monitoring management efficiency.



Despite the Directives 79/409/EEC (“Birds”) and 92/43/EEC (“Habitat”) obliging states to formulate Management Plans for areas covered by Rete Natura 2000, and the framework law for Protected Areas (L.394/91 and successive modifications) consenting the need for participatory definition of a Park Plan (art.12), only a few Protected Areas (regional and national) have fully complied so far. More generally, the need to define general and specific territorial objectives from the “bottom up” is becoming prevalent in more than one case (wide area planning, definition of town- and metropolitan-scale development plans, etc.). 



To provide Public Administration and Protected Area management boards with methodological support and tools for the formulation of criteria of sustainable management of natural resources.



  • Strengths

The methodologies described are the basis for the definition of the guidelines for sustainable management of biodiversity in age-old olive groves in Puglia and Crete(Project LIFE+ CENT.OLI.MED. - LIFE 07 NAT/IT/000450).

  • Weaknesses

The need to obtain funding to ensure the continuity of the research and the involvement of other researchers. 

Reference person/s: Ladisa Gaetano /
Collaborators: Contento Fabrizio /
Institutions involved:
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