GIAHS CAPACITY BUILDING

ITALIAN COOPERATION ABROAD PROJECT ON THE
FAO GLOBALLY IMPORTANT AGRICULTURAL HERITAGE SYSTEMS (GIAHS)

FOR THE RESILIENCE EVALUATION IN THREE DIFFERENT SOCIO-ENVIRONMENTAL AND BIO-CULTURAL FRAMEWORKS:
AFRICA, ASIA AND LATIN AMERICA

The development model promoted in the last decades has not only shown to be ineffective to solve the economic problems of many rural areas, but also contributed to the loss of cultural values associated to rural communities. This has brought to the degradation of valuable landscapes shaped by several generations of farmers, to the abandonment of millions of hectares of farmed land and to urbanization processes, creating social degradation and increasing urban sprawl. Agriculture is often considered as one of the main drivers of the degradation of the ecosystems. Nevertheless, when agriculture is practiced in a sustainable way, it can preserve landscape, biocultural diversity, protect watersheds, and improve soil health and water quality. The use of sustainable ecological practices is a key feature distinguishing resilient agricultures developed over centuries, ensuring sustainable yield over time, using reduced external energy inputs and adapting to difficult and diverse environmental conditions. The identification, documentation and safeguard of agricultural heritage systems intends to contributes to a new vision integrating human society and the environment, according to the sustainable development goals, but taking landscape as unifying perspective.

THE PROJECT OPERATE IN THE MORE GENERAL FRAMEWORK OF THE GOVERNANCE OF THE RURAL TERRITORY
WITH THE FOLLOWING STRATEGIES:

Improve the economic conditions of rural communities
in areas where the dynamic conservation of traditional agricultural landscapes associated with quality food production can represent a non-reproducible added value, which cannot be replicated by a competitor, also promoting tourism.
Promote the use of sustainable ecological practices
As a key feature distinguishing resilient agricultures developed over centuries.
Preserve biocultural diversity
Watersheds and soil health, implementing low energy input agriculture and favoring mitigation and adaptation to climate change.
Improve the quality of life of rural areas
Preserving their cultural values, reducing abandonment and poverty.

INTERNATIONAL MASTER COURSE - FIRST LEVEL

AGRICULTURAL HERITAGE SYSTEMS
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Today, the world is facing numerous challenges in front of changes in almost every sphere of life. This clearly seems to be a transition period in the economic, social, cultural, technological and political fields together with environmental change and its consequences. According to scientists, the impact of these changes is due to the effect of unsustainable practices carried out by human activities. Examples of these practices are the incorrect, imbalanced and unsustainable use of natural resources, as well as untenable development models, which do not consider long term impacts or “side effects” of activities conducted.

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OBJECTIVES

Of the course
The specific objective of the master is to train students on how to effectively manage and identify agricultural heritage systems and landscapes including them in a sustainable development model of the rural territory, harmonizing economic, social and environmental processes.
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CULTLAB

The Laboratory for Landscape and Cultural Heritage of the School of Agriculture
The course is part of the activities defined by a Memorandum of Understanding between FAO and the Italian Government for the promotion of the GIAHS program, based on the experience of Italy in the establishment of the National Register of Historical Rural Landscapes and Traditional Agricultural Practices, but also on rural landscape conservation and food quality.
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APROACH

Transdisciplinary
The teachings of the master will focus on the five main criteria of the FAO agricultural heritage system program, expressing the totality of the functionalities, goods and services provided by the agricultural heritage system.

INTERNATIONAL MASTER COURSE - FIRST LEVEL

BENEFICIARIES
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  • 18 places are reserved to young people (max 35 years) coming from the Priority Countries of the Italian Agency for Cooperation and Development (AICS).
  • A maximum of 12 students can be accepted by all the other countries. Three more students can apply for single teaching modules.

The potential participants in the Master Course are students, technicians and public officers interested in developing skills for the planning, management, protection and valorization of agricultural heritage systems, in the wider framework of rural development. The master intends to attract students, public officers and professionals, interested in the areas of local food production, cultural heritage related to the rural territories, traditional knowledge, biocultural diversity and agrobiodiversity. At the end of the master course, the participants will be able to develop and apply management strategies for the conservation and valorization of traditional agricultural system and landscapes, as well as preparing a proposal for the GIAHS program

The headquarter of the master 

is at the Laboratory for Landscape and Cultural Heritage, Department for Agricultural, Food and Forestry Systems, School of Agriculture, University of Florence, Via San Bonaventura 13, 50145, Firenze

Master courses

will be held at PIN headquarters, in Prato, a small city in the suburban area of Florence, where also the residences for the students are located. The PIN University Campus is located Piazza Giovanni Ciardi 25, 59100 Prato, in front of the Prato Porta al Serraglio train station, that connects Prato and Florence in about 25 minutes.

About the Project and the Master

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Laboratory for Landscape and Cultural Heritage of the School of Agriculture

  • Address: Via San Bonaventura 13, 50145, Firenze
  • Mail: info@agriculturalheritage.com