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Editors: Claval, Paul
Pagnini, Maria Paola
Scaini, Maurizio
Issue Date: 19-Jul-2006
Journal: Proceedings of the Conference THE CULTURAL TURN IN GEOGRAPHY, 18-20th of September 2003 - Gorizia Campus
Part VI: Tourism, Sustainable Development and Culture Turn
The educational farms that have existed in Italy for over twenty years are working farms,
most with rural tourist facilities, offering educational activities as part of their normal work.
They were created in order to supplement income in an agricultural world that is struggling
with low farm budgets and encourage young farmers in the sector. They are based, to a large
extent, on similar experiences abroad particularly in France, Spain, Belgium and Germany,
that have aroused considerable interest also at community level through a series of reference
standards that are clearly referred to in the last Rural Development Plan (2000-2006)1.
Italian regulations on the subject currently apply to a limited number of regions including
Emilia-Romagna, Lazio and Friuli-Venezia Giulia and highlight a sensitivity that, with only a
few exceptions, must still be consolidated or has yet to be developed. On the whole, the
country is covered by a series of projects that bring together a significant number of farms
with one common aim, that of enhancing their land, identity and typical products through
carefully planned educational tours.
This is not extemporaneous but part of a reassessment of ideas behind land use theories
that, for the last few decades, have considered the rural landscape as a resource to be protected
and enhanced as far as the identity and quality of places are concerned in order to promote its
economic growth rather than being surplus to requirements2.
This argument has not taken geographers by surprise and, for some time, they have been
affirming the need to examine land using sectorial criteria so that the sciences of Nature and
the sciences of Man can be effectively coordinated, as was also stated in Seoul in 2000, at the
29th International Geographical Congress3, when the concept of “diversity" as the main idea
behind the study of territorial realities was the subject of debate.
Educational farms fall perfectly in line with this concept of geography. Even when
fulfilling farm objectives, their intention is to give Man a sense of Nature and the existence of
Nature including the ecosystem, economic organization, cultural heritage and the local system
when he participates in these guided tours.
Type: Proceedings
ISBN: 88-8303-180-6
Rights: © Copyright 2003 Edizioni Università di Trieste - EUT
Appears in Collections:The cultural turn in geography

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