A Landscape Approach to Conservation:
Integrating Ecological Sciences & Participatory Methods
Louis F. Cassar
xxxi + 210 pages. 2010.
Pragmatic yet elegantly written! As coastal areas of the Mediterranean are confronted by ill-conceived developments, negatively influencing both the physical and cultural environment, it is important that decision makers, as well as the scientific community, read this stimulating and highly topical book. It clearly indicates that good science, when linked to the participation of affected communities, can help formulate rational policies to achieve a more sustainable future. Although the main focus is the island of Gozo, the methodology has much wider scope for conservation and could be effectively applied to other fragile islands and mainland locations around the Mediterranean Basin and beyond.
Brian D Clark, Professor of Environmental Management and Planning, Aberdeen University
The Mediterranean landscape is a much admired heritage, and a magnificent birthright for the people who live in this region. But Louis Cassar has documented most ably the many threats that it is now under. His admirable and authoritative book is based on work done in the Maltese island of Gozo, whose landscapes are being eroded fast. But the author is not interested in a tale of woe about a landscape in retreat. Instead he presents an alternative future for the island, based upon the landscape approach, in which the needs of both people and nature are considered together. He shows how natural and cultural values can be restored, and a green network created on Gozo. It is hard to be optimistic about the human environment these days but there are places where we can quite easily demonstrate how people and nature can rediscover a healthy balance. A small island like Gozo is a good place to start. Louis Cassar’s book is valuable because it shows what is possible.
Professor Adrian Phillips, Chair IUCN World Commission on Protected Areas (1994-2000)
Louis F. Cassar’s book delivers the long professed and highly acclaimed goal of integrating ecological with social sciences towards conservation and land-use management, in the most amenable and appropriate context for that purpose: the landscape. The author achieves his goal theoretically, methodologically and empirically, thus taking the discourse on landscape multifunctionality and sustainability a very substantial step forward, to the illustration and methodological negotiation of the necessarily holistic and integrative nature of (landscape) management and conservation.
Theano Terkenli, Professor of Geography, University of the Aegean
Copies of this book are available from the Institute at a cost of €22. Please contact us for an estimate of overseas postage and packing.
19 June 2013