Across forests and stakeholders: embracing complexity and bringing the landscape dimension closer to Europe

Illustration of an alternative future-scenario for the case-study area Helgeå in Southern Sweden.

Illustration of an alternative future-scenario for the case-study area Helgeå in Southern Sweden.

Landscapes can reflect a living fusion of people, culture and nature. Forests are an integral and crucial part of Europe’s vast, complex and extremely diverse landscapes. They provide an intricate and dynamic setting of people’s lives and offer an astonishingly diverse basket of ecosystem services. This delicate communion between people and nature also means that there is much at stake. Decisions and forest-related policies made at a macro level have immediate impacts on a local level.

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Giving voice to the farmers with Photovoice

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Ryan Tulusan, a smallholding farmer from Barangay Bantuanon in Lantapan, poses in front of his farm while showing which areas get flooded during the rainy season

If you can peek into the minds of smallholder farmers, what will you see?

More researchers are acknowledging the importance of involving stakeholders in their studies. For one, the stakeholders usually know more about the conditions in the project sites. They also have experience in what has worked in the past, and therefore would have an idea of what might work. Focus group discussions (FGDs) and in-depth interviews are usually used to learn more about the insights of the people in the communities.

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