Multifunctional Rural Land Management - Economics and Policies

Edited by Floor Brouwer and C. Martijn van der Heide 
Earthscan  March 2009  

Hardback  384 pp  ISBN 9781844075775      £70.00
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.



  • Natural Resource Management; Globalization and Regional Integration

Part I Setting the Stage; Challenges and Reviews

  • 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

Part II Appreciate the Prerequisite; Perspectives on Land

  • A Sustainable Management of Nature Reserves
  • Farmland Conservation in the Netherlands and British Columbia, Canada
  • Economic Development and Biodiversity: The Environmental Kuznets Curve in a Policy Assessment Tool

Part III Reorientations and Openings; Agri-environmental Programmes

  • Factors Influencing Private Transaction Costs Related to Agri-environmental Schemes in Europe
  • Compensation or Conservation Payments for Farmers? Exploring Opportunities for Agri-environmental Schemes in the Netherlands
  • The Provision of Public Goods from Agriculture: Observations from Agri-environmental Policies in the US

Part IV Creating a Common Currency; Landscape Values

  • Changing Rural Landscapes: Demand and Supply of Public Services in The Netherlands
  • How do Farms Economic and Technical Dynamics Contribute to Landscape Patterns?
  • 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

Part V Outlook; Emerging Perspectives of Resource Management in Rural Areas

  • Multifunctional Towns; Effects of New Retail Developments in Rural Areas
  • Rural Areas in Transition; A Developing World Perspective
  • Conclusions and Prospects


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