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Multifunctional Rural Land Management: Economics and Policies

Edited By: Floor Brouwer and CMartijn van der Heide

300 pages, figures, tables, boxes, index


Hardback | Mar 2009 | #178258 | ISBN-13: 9781844075775
Availability: Usually dispatched within 6 days Details
NHBS Price: £79.99 $103 / €92 approx

About this book

The increasing demand for rural land and its natural resources is
creating competition and conflicts. Many interested parties, including farmers, nature conservationists, rural residents and tourists, compete for the same space. Especially in densely populated areas, agriculture, recreation, urban and suburban growth and infrastructure development exert a constant pressure on rural areas. Because land is a finite resource, spatial policies which are formulated and implemented to increase the area allocated to one use imply a decrease in land available for other uses. As a result, at many locations, multi-purpose land use is becoming increasingly important. This notion of multi-purpose land use is reflected in the term 'multifunctionality'.

This volume provides insights into viable strategies of sustainable management practices allowing multiple functions sustained by agriculture and natural resources in rural areas. It shows how the rural economy and policies can balance and cope with these competing demands and includes numerous case studies from Europe, North America and developing countries.

This book confronts the conflicting demands for land from agriculture, recreation, conservation and urban growth; provides a framework for the evaluation of competing claims for the use of land and shows how multiple functions can be integrated into rural planning; and, includes case studies from Europe, North America and developing countries.

'This very timely and eclectic collection of chapters extends the concept of multifunctionality in important new ways. The volume will be of great value to researchers and policymakers everywhere who are concerned about the future of food production and natural resources, as well as rural areas generally.' Stephan J. Goetz, Pennsylvania State University, USA 'As a rock hard economist I do not share all the perspectives presented in this timely book, but the analyses are insightful and well put together. A must for everyone who wants to know more about multifunctionality.' Eirik Romstad, Senior Research Fellow, Norwegian University of Life Sciences, and Past President of the European Association of Agricultural Economists 'This is a timely analysis the highlights a key problem in rural land management, that of clashes between human demands and productive capacity as multiple agents seek to exploit the multiple functions of rural areas. Set against a background of continuing local spatial dominance of agriculture and its declining economic importance while global food security is being undermined by fundamental shifts in land use, these chapters provide a coherent multidisciplinary perspective on the economic and political dimensions of multifunctional land management that sets the scene for analyses of emerging problems in this area such as the impact of climate change.' Noel Russel, University of Manchester, UK 'This book will certainly find its way onto the core reading lists of my courses on rural geography, and I am convinced that it will provide an important yardstick against which future books on multifunctionality will be evaluated.' Geoff Wilson, Environment and Planning C: Government and Policy


Introduction; The biodiversity policy context of multifunctional rural land management; The further development of agri-environment schemes; extending and defending conservation values; Economic issues surrounding nature conservation in rural areas; A comparative analysis of nature reserves pricing systems; Farmland conservation in the Netherlands and British Columbia, Canada; The drivers of the Environmental Kuznets Curve in policy assessment tools; Factors influencing private transaction costs related to agri-environmental schemes in Europe; Compensation or conservation payments for farmers? Exploring biodiversity and landscape offset opportunities in the Netherlands; The provision of public goods from agriculture: observations from agri-environmental policies in the US; Changing rural landscapes: demand and supply of public services in The Netherlands; Agri-environmental schemes and farmers' landscape management at local-regional scales; When rural landscapes change functionality; Examples from Portugal and Denmark; Historical perspectives on the development of multifunctional landscapes; a case study from the UK uplands; Multifunctional towns; effects of new retail developments in rural areas; Rural areas in transition; a developing world perspective; Conclusions and prospects; Index.

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Floor Brouwer is Head of the Research Unit on Management of Natural Resources and C. Martijn van der Heide is Research Scholar at the Research Unit on Management of Natural Resources, both at LEI (Agricultural Economics Institute), Wageningen University and Research Centre, The Hague, The Netherlands.

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