1 – HISTORY OF RURAL LANDSCAPE (6 CREDITS, 18 HOURS)
The teaching will provide students with information on the history of the relationships between man and the environment. The students will develop skills enabling them to carry out historical investigations using a multiple set of methods and approaches.
a – landscape history (3 credits)
This module will inform students on the historical dynamics of the agrarian and forest landscape.
B – environmental history (3 credits)
This module will allow the students to understand how the human society has affected the natural environment.
2 – RURAL DEVELOPMENT (6 CREDITS, 18 HOURS)
The teaching will provide students with the knowledge of rural development strategies with particular attention to the role of landscape resources as an added value for the local economy.
a – economic assessment of rural landscapes (3 credits)
This module will inform students on methods and approaches for the economic evaluation of landscape resources, considering food, tourism and the environmental assets.
b – integrated valorization of biocultural resources (3 credits)
The course will provide students with the necessary knowledge to develop programs and projects for the valorization of the biocultural capital for the planning of the rural territory. Particular attention will be dedicated on labeling and certification protocols.
3 – TRADITIONAL KNOWLEDGE (6 CREDITS, 18 HOURS)
The course will teach students how to analyze and assess traditional knowledge and practices, ingenious adaptive technology and management systems.
a – soil and water conservation: traditional and sustainable techniques (3 credits)
This module will inform students on various traditional and soil bioengineering systems for the conservation of soils and water resources and how to evaluate their contribution to the reduction of fertility, erosion, stability and water scarcity.
b – traditional building materials (3 credits)
This teaching will inform student how to use traditional building materials and on the assessment of their technical qualities. Particular attention will be dedicated to terracing, their conservation and maintenance.
4 – FOOD CULTURES (3 CREDITS, 18 HOURS)
This course will provide students with the necessary knowledge on local food production, the assessment of their quality, the genetic diversity and the assessment of traditional varieties.
a – traditional food (3 credits)
This course is dedicated to the assessment of food quality with particular attention to traditional foods.
b – genetic diversity (3 credits)
The teaching will provide students with skills enabling them to understand the genetic features of traditional variety and also on the practical aspects of the cultivation of traditional crops.
5 – AGROECOLOGY (6 CREDITS, 36 HOURS)
The course intends to present agroecology as an integrated approach that simultaneously applies ecological and social concepts and principles to the design and management of food and agricultural systems. It seeks to optimize the interactions between plants, animals, humans and the environment while taking into consideration the social aspects that need to be addressed for a sustainable and fair food system. Particular attention will be given to the study of the agrarian system as an ecological footprint of the metabolism that a society maintains with the natural systems sustaining it. The students will develop skills on the study of the energy balances of different agrarian systems. The course is strictly connected to the laboratory for planning and management.
6 – LABORATORY 1. PLANNING AND MANAGEMENT (12 CREDITS, 72 HOURS)
The laboratory for planning includes most of the teaching hours of the master. It has been organized in order to provide to the students all the knowledge needed for the sustainable planning and management of rural areas. Information on the main international initiatives and programs concerning landscape protection, environmental protection, climate change and sustainable forest management will be provided. The teaching will allow students to acquire not only the theoretical knowledge needed to plan the rural territory, but also skills to create all the outputs needed in the planning process. This will require to develop personal abilities on aero photo interpretation, the construction of maps using geographic information systems, the use of landscape indices, the methodologies to assess landscape dynamics and landscape monitoring. The teaching is organized in the following modules:
a – Landscape project and territorial planning (3 CFU, 18 hours)
b – Planning and management of rural areas, forest management (3 CFU, 18 hours)
c – Mapping of agroforestry systems (6 CFU, 36 hours)
7 – LABORATORY 2. AGRICULTURAL HERITAGE (6 CREDITS, 36 HOURS)
a – traditional knowledge and sustainable innovation (3 credits, 18 hours)
Starting from the analysis of the mechanisms of construction of human knowledge, tangible and intangible values of the traditional knowledge systems will be analyzed, as well as their potential relationship with sustainable innovation processes.
b – cultural ecology (3 credits, 18 hours)
The understanding of social organizations, value systems and cultural practices associated with agricultural heritage systems, require a knowledge of the fundaments of ethno-anthropological studies and research applied to the rural territory.
Besides the normal lectures, guest lectures will be hosted during the master that will be held by relevant scientists in the scientific disciplines related to agricultural heritage systems. Together with academicians, also administrators and officers of several international organizations collaborating to the project, such as World Bank, FAO, CBD, UNESCO, will provide presentations highlighting the connections of the master with their activities.
The structure of the course is based on frontal classes and laboratories, as well as field work. Some teachings are articulated in two different modules. Field work activities will be carried out in selected sites of the Italian National Register of Historical Rural Landscapes representing interesting examples for the main topics of the lectures.
LABORATORIES AND FIELD WORK
Students from the Priority Countries of the Italian Agency for Cooperation and Development will spend 15 days in one country of the program for a training stage, according to the decisions of the scientific committee.
The Master includes a final exam consisting in the drafting of a proposal for presenting an agricultural heritage system to the GIAHS programme. The choice of the agricultural heritage system to be studied, one for each student, will be done together by the student and the teacher. At the end of the course, with the approval of the final thesis by the commission, the title of Master in “Agricultural Heritage Systems” is issued. The issue of the title is subject to regular payment of the registration fee.