Hands in the ground. Cooperation and rural development in the Balkans
Save the date: 1 June 2012 at 11 am. for the presentation in Venice by the Osservatorio Balcani e Caucaso in cooperation with the Veneto region and the UNESCO Venice Office of the book “Organic Balkans. Stakeholders, policies, and institutions: a regional perspective”.
Matteo Vittuari, a scholar of sustainable agricultural and rural policies and transitions in the Balkans, has authored this 140-page paperback published in 2011 in two languages (English and Italian) as collaborator of the NGO “Osservatorio dei Balcani e Caucaso – OBC”.
Organic agriculture in the Balkans is still in its early stages though it already acts as a fundamental stimulus for sustainable rural development in the region; it represents a sound system to be proposed as a best practice within the Biosphere Reserves. Through a comparative analysis of organic farming in the countries of Southeast Europe, the book provides original insights into the process of European Union integration.
Organic farming is an overarching topic of the European SeeNet II Programme; in particular to enhance links between rural areas and nature, to develop agricultural policies and their regulatory framework in the Balkans and in terms of EU integration, and to strengthen the international cooperation in the fields of sustainable rural development and certification of organically farm products. It aims also to promote a new food culture stimulating rural tourism, heritage foods, and the development of small medium enterprises. All these issue are clearly relevant for the implementation of the Man and the Biosphere (MAB) Programme of UNESCO in the Southeast European region and related activities of the UNESCO Office of Venice.
The decentralised programme of cooperation between Italy and Southeast Europe SeeNet II, led by the region of Tuscany and co-financed by the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, involves 6 regions, the Autonomous province of Trento, the Italian civil society and 47 local authorities in Southeast Europe. Osservatorio Balcani e Caucaso is the partner for analysis and information dissemination.
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