civilscapeThe first Balkan Landscape Forum will take place on October 4, 2013, in Tivat, Montenegro. It will be organized in collaboration between CIVISCAPE and the project 'Heritage – Driver of Development', implemented within the Cross-border programme Croatia-Montenegro, under the Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance (IPA).

Forum will focus on the challenges in protection and management of landscapes in the Balkan area within EU and international frameworks; it will provide a showcase of how European and international levels are linked in regional efforts pertaining to heritage and landscape issues.

Our Landscape is a shared resource and a shared responsibility where different values meet, i.e. cultural, ecological, aesthetic, social and economic. The European Landscape Convention (ELC) is an instrument for ensuring a richer life environment, where landscape diversity is managed sustainably. The ELC provides a clear democratic aspect. First, it highlights the region's social significance, and it emphasizes the importance of people to actively participate in the evaluation and management of the landscape. The democratic aspect is also evident in the Convention's definition of landscape as “an area, as perceived by people, whose character is the result of the action and interaction of natural and/ or human factors.”

The Balkan Landscape Forum is a conference that aims to increase a dialogue between regional and national authorities, municipalities, businesses, nonprofits/ NGOs, landowners and the public. The conference is focusing on the interaction between the actors. It will highlight national and transnational examples and landscape perspectives.

In addition to ELC, the Forum will present some other European conventions that are important for the protection and sustainable usage of cultural landscape: the European Conventions on the Protection of the Architectural and Archaeological Heritage (Granada/ Valetta) and the Council of Europe newest Framework Convention on the Value of Cultural Heritage for Society (the Faro Convention).

The main purpose of these Conventions is to reinforce and promote policies for the conservation and enhancement of Europe's heritage. Acknowledging and recognizing that the archaeological and architectural heritage, and the whole cultural landscape, is seriously threatened because of different reasons, the mentioned European Conventions call for the sustainable preservation/ usage of these irreplaceable sites of human history. The Conventions not only recognize that heritage is threatened

because of different reasons but they also point out that it can be a driver for the development of certain regions. Heritage underlines/ forms the identity of landscapes and should therefore be taken into consideration in terms of sustainable management plans.

A wider understanding of heritage and its relation to society is promoted trough the Faro Convention. This Convention highlights that “every person has a right to engage with the cultural heritage of their choice, while respecting the rights and freedoms of others” and that it is necessary to “involve everyone in society in the ongoing process of defining and managing cultural heritage”.

A segment of the Balkan Landscape Forum will focus on experiences and challenges in implementing EU and international standards of landscape protection and management at the cross-border area of Montenegro and Croatia, as well as a wider region.

The areas of Dubrovnik and Boka Kotorska, which have cultural and natural heritage and overall landscape of similar characteristics, face the same problems when it comes to protecting and managing these valuable resources. Cultural and natural heritage, and especially the overall landcape, are under the risk for being inadequately managed and thus devastated. Individual cultural properties, buildings and urban complexes, receive (in the most cases) a good professional care. This especially refers to UNESCO’s World Heritage sites – the city of Dubrovnik, Kotor, Perast... Nevertheless, problems are recognized when it comes to other segments of cultural and natural heritage - part of it that has not been officially protected, but contributes significantly to the value of region’s overall cultural landcape. Current development trends, as well as excessive and unadequate construction, are thretening to degrade this authentic landscape and destory its natural and created values.

In cooperation with other partners of the project ‘Heritage – Driver of Development', CIVILSCAPEs member organizations Expeditio from Montenegro and ECOVAST from Croatia endeavour to contribute to enhancing the landscape treatment through applying new methodologies in natural and cultural heritage protection and management.

The Balkan Landscape Forum will end with a sightseeing tour of the village of Gornja Lastva, situated in Mount Vrmac area, one of the pilot areas of the project ‘Heritage – Driver of Development'.

CIVILSCAPE is setting up a number of transnational landscape forum events in different European member states that aim to increase dialogue between civil society, regional and national authorities. The conferences are focusing on the interaction between actors and stakeholders, including the role of civil society. They try to highlight national and international examples and landscape perspectives in seminars and during excursions. Furthermore they offer opportunities for exchange of experiences and discussions in inspiring environments.

The conference is designed for people and organizations with an interest to participate in a broad dialogue about the landscape, such as non-profit organizations, national, regional planning authorities, regional and national authorities, and others.

Programme, October 4, 2013

9:30 - 10:00

Coffee and registration

10:00 – 10:15

Introduction, welcome

Representatives of the project “Heritage – Driver of Development”: Municipality of Tivat, Physical Planning Institute of Dubrovnik-Neretva County

Welcome address by CIVILSCAPE

10:15 – 10:45

European Landscape Convention

Ms. Maguelonne DEJEANT-PONS, Executive Secretary of the European Landscape Convention, Council of Europe

10:45 – 11:15

Understanding landscape. Insight to the meaning of landscape and its potential for civil engagement and participatory democracy.

Mr. Dirk GOTZMAN, Director of CIVILSCAPE

11:15 - 11:30

Discussion and Coffee break

11:30 – 12:00

Faro Convention - Council of Europe Framework Convention on the Value of Cultural Heritage for Society and Ljubljana Process II: Rehabilitating our Common Heritage

Ms. Milena Filipovic, Project Manager Secretariat of the Task Force on Culture and Society Regional Cooperation Council

12:00 – 12:20

The European Charter of Urbanism of the European Council of Town Planners (ECTP) and the landscape dimension

Luc-Emile Bouche-Florin, Honorary President of the European Council of Town Planners (ECTP)

12:20 – 12:50

Discussion and Coffee break

12:50– 13:10

Landscape, local knowledge, and action in Catalonia

Mr. Pere Sala i Marti, Coordinator Landscape Observatories, Catalonya

13:10 – 14:00

Challenges in implementing EU standards in SEE region (cross-border area Dubrovnik-Boka Kotorska)

Partners in the project  “Heritage – Driver of Development”

14:00 – 14:30


15:00 – 17:00

Visit to Gornja Lastva

EXPEDITIO is a non-governmental organization whose mission is to encourage sustainable spatial development in Montenegro and SEE region through activity in the fields of sustainable architecture, cultural heritage, urban planning and through projects that encourage overall development of the civil society. Expeditio was established in 1997.

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