Introduction to Natural Heritage
This course introduces Europe's cultural landscapes as the basis for understanding the importance of crossing disciplinary boundaries to safeguard natural and cultural heritage. Both cultural and natural heritage are integrated elements of the landscape which can be considered to be under threat. Importantly, actions that might initially seem useful in one sector can easily have negative impacts in the other. Europe is richly endowed with a great diversity of landscapes, with accompanying impressive histories and natural resources. The challenges and changes that face Europe extend beyond the heritage sectors, and certainly affect them; these changes relate directly to the exploitation of natural resources, climate change, changing demographics, and the pressures of tourism. Several EU member states have signed and ratified the European Landscape Convention which strives for sustainable development through the controlled management of change. It is important to understand why these two conservation sectors - that originated in the humanities and sciences - were separated in the first place, why this divide is problematic and then where opportunities lie for cooperation. This course introduces nature conservation and its relationship with archaeological heritage. The five modules explore heritage management within the scope of European landscapes and the benefits of crossing the boundaries between the disciplines of ecology and archaeology.
Prior knowledge on the subject is not required.