Rural Heritage

Rural Heritage

Spain and Carpathian Regions

Task Leader: UGR (ES)

This pilot promotes participation in cultural and environmental protected areas as a way to solve conflicts between preservation, re-use, and economical activities.

It focuses on Sierra Nevada (Spain), an important protected area as UNESCO Biosphere Reserve and National Park.

A serious disagreement has arisen between political administrations, stakeholders, and academia on the one hand, which propose most of Sierra Nevada territory as World Heritage Site and, on the other, local communities that consider this as an external imposition with no benefits and with negative consequences for the daily life of the locals and for the conservation of its environmental and heritage values. At the same time, a new development model based on intensive agricultural production has been implemented in this territory.

The pilot intends to reinforce social participation of local communities as the best strategy to manage and preserve the heritage, cultural and environmental values of these landscapes. Therefore mediation processes between the population and local agents and the institutions and administrations which are responsible for the protection and management of the heritage, environment, and the territory will be implemented.

The implementation of co-governance initiatives are expected to have a direct impact on reinforcing the resilience of this heritage, increasing its capacity to face current challenges, which are directly connected to global and climate change.

Specific Activities

The pilot plans to:

  • promote a participatory mediation process between local stakeholders, farmers and communities and the regional and national administrations and institutions involved in the cultural, territorial and environmental management of Sierra Nevada (Spain)
  • compare the situation of Sierra Nevada with Carpathian projects
  • discuss about the creation of a co-governance initiative for the territorial safe-keeping as the best way to protect agrarian heritage (tangible and intangible) and rural landscapes
  • promote a more resilient rural CH improving local engagement and public participation in policy making, economic, cultural and social initiatives and territorial and environmental management.


  • 17-27 May 2018,Granada,Spain. "Darro River Valley" Programme.
    Read more here
  • 27-29 April, Granada (Spain). Workshop on communal management of the rural areas in Spain.rural Heritage.
    Read more here
  • 17 February 2018, Cáñar, (Granada, Spain). Annual cleaning of the medieval irrigation channel of Barjas, in the framework of pilot case on rural Heritage.
    Read more here