Die Bodenkultur - Journal for Land Management, Food and Environment

Project Group Environmental History:

Environmental histories: the long-term interaction of society and nature in three Austrian villages


The environmental histories of three Austrian villages were investigated over an extended time period, from the medieval land clearing to the present. Theoretical considerations on social metabolism and colonization of nature were used as a common starting point. The interdisciplinary investigation was based on a three partite model of the interaction of population, production system and the local agro-ecological system. From the broad range of results, the medieval land clearance, land taxes in the 19th century and the demographic transition on the local level are presented briefly. The relevance for regional sustainable development is discussed.

Key words: Environmental History, Landscape Development, Sustainability, Medieval Land Use, Interdisciplinary Research.