Mediterranean rural regions represent rich and fragile settings in agro-ecological and socio-economic terms. The region is increasingly beset by growing human presence and climate change dynamics. Agropastoral systems are still important activities in terms of employment and income, but also for ecosystem functioning and landscape management. Traditional agro-pastoral systems have gone through important reshaping in recent decades and they have to confront today the dynamics challenging their future. This paper examines how problems and issues in the generational renewal of EU-Mediterranean farms affect their prole and their future roles in the development of the area, in particular in Italy and Greece. Current dynamics seem to indicate that the younger members of livestock farm families often seek alternatives to pastoralism, thus favouring the depopulation of mountain areas and exposing grasslands to problems of abandonment and socio-economic desertification. This context witnesses a growing presence of immigrant shepherds, who reach southern Europe from other pastoral areas in the Mediterranean region, coming to provide skilled labour at a relatively low cost. Their presence enables the pastures of mountainous areas to be maintained and kept productive, reproducing the patterns of generational renewal associated with an ethnic substitution that has characterized Euro-Mediterranean pastoralism in the last century. Women also seem to gain an active role in the family farms once again, as in the past their role had been neglected.

Change in Euro-Mediterranean pastoralism: which opportunities for rural development and generational renewal?

FARINELLA, DOMENICA
;
2017-01-01

Abstract

Mediterranean rural regions represent rich and fragile settings in agro-ecological and socio-economic terms. The region is increasingly beset by growing human presence and climate change dynamics. Agropastoral systems are still important activities in terms of employment and income, but also for ecosystem functioning and landscape management. Traditional agro-pastoral systems have gone through important reshaping in recent decades and they have to confront today the dynamics challenging their future. This paper examines how problems and issues in the generational renewal of EU-Mediterranean farms affect their prole and their future roles in the development of the area, in particular in Italy and Greece. Current dynamics seem to indicate that the younger members of livestock farm families often seek alternatives to pastoralism, thus favouring the depopulation of mountain areas and exposing grasslands to problems of abandonment and socio-economic desertification. This context witnesses a growing presence of immigrant shepherds, who reach southern Europe from other pastoral areas in the Mediterranean region, coming to provide skilled labour at a relatively low cost. Their presence enables the pastures of mountainous areas to be maintained and kept productive, reproducing the patterns of generational renewal associated with an ethnic substitution that has characterized Euro-Mediterranean pastoralism in the last century. Women also seem to gain an active role in the family farms once again, as in the past their role had been neglected.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11570/3131064
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