MedScapes is funded by the European Neighbourhood and Partnership Instrument (ENPI) for initiatives between EU and other Mediterranean countries. It started in January 2014 and will end in December 2015.
By developing landscape maps as a tool, we will provide support to decision-makers responsible for land use and regional planning in the four participating countries, while raising awareness about the character of local landscapes and the natural environments they support.
MedScapes brings together eight partners from four countries for this two-year project: Cyprus, Greece, Jordan and Lebanon. Each country is represented by one NGO and one University and is led by the Laona Foundation for the Conservation and Regeneration of the Cypriot Countryside. The partners are:
– Laona Foundation (Cyprus)
– Open University of Cyprus
– Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature (Jordan)
– German Jordanian University
– Society for the Protection of Nature in Lebanon
– American University of Beirut (Lebanon)
– Mediterranean Institute of Nature and Anthropos (Greece)
– University of the Aegean (Greece)
Landscapes results from the way different components of our environment – both natural and cultural – interact together and are perceived and understood by people.
(European Landscape Convention – Florence, 2000)
MedScapes is a new project that will assess and map the unique landscape of the eastern Mediterranean. We are developing a multifunctional tool that can be used by authorities, organizations and educational institutions for better regional planning as well as design at a local level.
Given that the eastern Mediterranean has special characteristics shared by the countries of the region, we aim to produce a common methodology for mapping and assessing landscapes which can be used by decision makers and taught in universities. Our mapping will include the cultural, environmental, geological and other spatial elements of the landscape. In this way, we will provide a more holistic understanding of the dynamics at play in different areas of a country or region, so as to better appreciate and manage the ever-evolving nature of landscapes. This knowledge will allow new methods to be developed to identify, assess and preserve essential core aspects of landscape character. Moreover, various elements of the project, such as the publication of the ‘Best Practice Methodology’, the elaboration of a ‘Community Participative Process’ and a ‘Risk Assessment Tool’, the establishment of a ‘Landscape Observatory’ and the producing of educational materials, will help develop and enrich the concept of landscape and its role in the eastern Mediterranean.
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