Parks & Benefits: Landscape Sustainability in and around Nature Parks

Jesper Brandt, Andreas Aagaard Christensen, Esbern Holmes, Stig Roar Svenningsen

Publikation: Bidrag til bog/antologi/rapportKonferenceabstrakt i proceedingsForskningpeer review


The core of landscape sustainability is carrying capacities understood as limits or standards not to be exceeded in order to protect the supporting landscape system. They are results of political decision processes among stakeholders, balancing use and protection preferably based on scientific and/or experiential cognition. Many historical examples show that such carrying capacities depend on a common commitment among stakeholders to a longsighted protection of the landscape system acknowledged as the main interaction between man and nature. However, 'Mediation among stakeholders is irrelevant if it is based on ignorance of the integrated character of nature and people'(Gunderson and Holling 2002). This is the main reason why general models for sustainability are so difficult to develop. However, a nature park designated to fulfill protection purposes through stakeholder cooperation might fulfill the conditions of using carrying capacity as a management instrument, provided that the stakeholders respects the goals, or that the authorities have means and intent to ensure that these goals will be respected among the stakeholders. Nature parks in Europe are traditionally open parks with emphasis on nature conservation. Increasing visitor flows and cuts in staff resources has put focus on the management of visitor carrying capacities and their relation to landscape structure and zoning. At the same time park authorities face falling public appropriations and receding focus on their conservation functions compared to recreation and settlement. The constant priority of the balancing of nature protection and economic utilization gives rise to various experience with land use and visitor management relevant for sustainable development also outside the parks.
In European nature parks the handling of visitor carrying capacities related to Natura2000-sites and their included habitat type areas is a priority theme for the sustainable management of nature parks. A comparative analysis of conditions and initiatives related to visitor carrying capacities in 8 nature parks in the Baltic region has been carried out, based on Natura2000-designations and -statistics. Outside the parks focus is put on park-stakeholder relations and the landscape adaptability of feudal agricultural structures. Many nature parks are related to cultural landscapes with a high concentration of manorial estates with strong traditions in multifunctional land use typically combining agriculture, forestry, hunting, settlement and recreation. The spatial and sustainability characteristics of the landscapes produced by these holdings compared to modern monofunctional agricultural enterprises are analyzed. Some land reform related suggestions to landscape ecological relevant measures that can support a more landscape adaptive land use and protection in agricultural landscapes are formulated.
Stakeholder involvement in management of nature parks will be emphasized as important experience for landscape management and planning outside parks, based on the general frame of the European landscape convention.

TitelThe 8th World Congress of the International Association for Landscape Ecology. Proceedings : Landscape ecology for sustainable environment and culture
Antal sider2
UdgivelsesstedBeijing, Kina
Publikationsdato18 aug. 2011
StatusUdgivet - 18 aug. 2011
Begivenhed8th Wolrd Congress of the International Association for Landscape Ecology: Landscape Ecology for Sustainable Environment and Culture - China National Convention Center (CNCC), Beijing, Kina
Varighed: 18 aug. 201123 aug. 2011
Konferencens nummer: 8


Konference8th Wolrd Congress of the International Association for Landscape Ecology
LokationChina National Convention Center (CNCC)


  • Nature parks
  • Natura2000
  • visitor carrying capacity
  • manorial estates
  • sustainable landscapes
  • European Landscape Convention

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