Contributions Workshop 1.3.C:
Social inclusive development in Mountain regions analyzed along gender, generation and diversity as driver for adaption to structural changes

ID: 129
Workshop & Poster
Women as Drivers for a sustainable and social inclusive development in mountain regions
Keywords: gender, women, social-inclusive development, mountain areas

Oedl-Wieser, Theresia
Federal Institute for Less Favoured and Mountainous Areas, Austria

Workshop Abstract:

Mountain regions must be seen as a gendered spaces, which means that the living conditions, resources, power relations and perspectives for a good livelihood are unequally distributed between men and women. A gender analysis in this context involves the critical examination of taken-for-granted assumptions about living conditions and development. Beside the given context that mountain regions are often hard to access, isolated, and remote, as many scholars stress in their research, a gender-analytical critique will challenge these assumptions and examine additionally the manifold powerful discriminatory practices, discourses, and norms that work against women in particular. The structural discrimination of women in many mountain regions is caused by patriarchal societies, social and cultural norms and difficult economic situations. Therefore, gender discrimination, gender exploitation, and disenfranchisement of women are still persisting. Feminist research revealed that gender relations play a critical role in the management of natural resources, and that women tend to be systematically disadvantaged in terms of access to resources, decision-making, and, ultimately, power relations though they bear the burden of a substantial part of the productive work and most of the reproductive work. There is often great scepticism of stakeholders regarding the possibility and necessity of linking gender equality issues to measures and projects in mountain development processes. The missing gender awareness and gender competence as well as individual and institutional resistance may prevent an effective implementation of gender equality. It is a far-reaching loss for mountain development discourses and processes if the manifold potential, knowledge and expertise of women are not utilised. Enhancing the discourse about gender equality in mountain regions can raise the people’s awareness for women’s potentials and problems and can help to transform conservative views in gender role models.

Poster Abstract:

Starting points for a greater reception of gender issues in mountain areas

After decades of limited progress towards a higher appreciation of the role of women in mountain regions, it is necessary to push initiatives to support committed actors and women networks. It is decisive to learn more about the status and the role of mountain women in different countries and regions in order to further support women as potential agents of change and let their strengths, their vulnerability and their progress be seen by the world. Several factors are required to ensure that women will be an integral part of sustainable mountain and social inclusive development in the future; more mountain-specific and local research through a gender-lens, tailored trainings and awareness raising for women’s own potentials, support women’s access and control of resources, assistance with entrepreneurship, information and raising awareness of the rights of women and finally, networking among mountain women all over the world. Furthermore, funding initiatives should be provided by transnational (UN Organisations, EU), national and regional authorities. Civil society organisations which are active on mountain regions (e.g. CIPRA, CONDENSAN) should also pay greater attention to women’s issues in mountain regions. 


ID: 365
Workshop & Poster
Providing childcare services as a means of socio-cultural change for women farmers in South Tyrol (Italy)
Keywords: Social farming, women farmers, South Tyrol

Gramm, Verena; Dalla Torre, Cristina; Membretti, Andrea
Eurac Research, Italy

Workshop and Poster Abstract:

Still today, invisibility, low societal appreciation and inappropriate remuneration characterizes the work of women farmers. Because it is necessary to adapt to current economic, social and ecological challenges, family-conducted farms have to reconsider traditional gender roles.

In recent years, the provision of social services on the farm developed into a diversification opportunity in the agricultural sector. In South Tyrol, a social farming initiative was born in 2006, when some local women farmers started to design childcare service delivery on the farms. Today, a network of about 50 women farmers contributes to the offer of decentral, high-quality childcare in the Province.

This study focusses on women farmers as central charachters of social farming in South Tyrol. Rural gender studies and the women empowerment-literature suggest female entrepreneurship to promote a balanced power structure between men and women in agriculture and to enhance the improvement of women farmers’ social status in the local context. Accordingly, this explorative study investigates the recognized effects and outcomes that the activity as childminder on the farm has on women farmers' working and living conditions.

We applied a qualitative approach, interviewing 7 women farmers that provide childcare services and 4 experts. The results show that providing childcare services enhanced women farmers’ autonomy and had positive impacts on their skills. This activity changed their social role in the community by revalorizing rural lifestyles and by enabling the reconciliation of work and life for working mothers. Nevertheless, women farmers recognized both positive and negative effects on their workload, on their interfamilial- and other social relations. Finally, providing childcare services contributes to the sustainable development of mountain farming by improving women farmers’ financial situation and their appreciation. Nevertheless, a decrease of free time and work-overload could reduce the positive outcomes of their new activity on their quality of life.


ID: 410
Workshop & Poster
Women Make Economy in the Alps. No idea is too High
Keywords: Women, Entrepreneurship, New Agriculture, Peer-to-Peer Exchange, Networking

Zilio, Emanuela1,2
Donne Si Fa Storia; 2University of Milan

Workshop Abstract:

The Alpine Region constitutes the largest EU economic and productive hub, with a high potential for development. However, according to the OECD-EU Commission reports (2017), women are under-represented among Alpine entrepreneurs. They are more likely to operate in non-capital intensive sectors, tend to have different motivations/intentions in entrepreneurship than men and latent entrepreneurial potential that is not realised. Empowering women is fundamental to the re-engineering of development in the Alps.

In the research concerning women entrepreneurship also in rural areas by the University of Milan and the project Donne Si Fa Storia, it emerged that in Lombardy region they are bigger in percentage (29%) then in the whole provinces’ territory (20%) and, usually, they are unique leaders of the company (90.34% of the cases). Also in Trentino, the female role resulted to be crucial. According to the official data (CCIAA, 2018, ISPAT 2018) female entrepreneurs are leading 18% of the about 50.000 companies. In agriculture they represent the 15% and the most youngest group, one out of four of the young companies is lead by women.

The workshop will allow to share evidences from driven interviews as a ground to open a necessary discussion on this topic. It will also highlight the necessity to promote the role of women in the mountain productive world - including in the agricultural field, through a greater (self)awareness, valorization of innovative entrepreneurial ventures, strategic and alternative finance for business, the creation of horizontal networks as a dynamic new model for collaborative innovation in the Alps.

Poster Abstract:

Women Make Economy in the Alps. No idea is too High - Numbers and Figures.

Numbers and figures help to improve knowledge about women entrepreneurship and to draw an explanatory framework while assessing their impact and economic potential in key sectors in pilot regions (Piedmont, Lombardy, Trentino, Veneto, Friuli Venezia Giulia).

The poster presents visual data and infographics from the different research project interviews, so to provide an insight about women needs, challenges, business models and trends in different geographical areas.

Actually, results show women’s strong passion for their work, high-level competences, their will to improve constantly by learning and to get qualitative collaborators. In the start-ups, women more than men underline the gap between the necessity of professionals ready to cope and manage with innovation and the lack of qualitative education and “entrepreneurial spirit” in young people. In almost all regions, women’s skills in leading the processes, generating, empowering and re-invigorating business came out as a common element as well as their capacity to enforce networks of collaboration, also with the aim to improve knowledge, share and spread innovation.

In the poster, a special focus is dedicated to women active in the agricultural field and to their innovative approach to productive processes, technological tools, communication channels. Women prefer to directly process some of their products and to create experiential and/or educational events for customers, visitors and even for the local community. The peer-to-peer exchange between entrepreneurs and customers ends up to be for them a key for success, because of the feedback, the new inputs (user-driven innovation - Von Hippel 1988) and the communication it can activate.


ID: 526
Workshop & Poster
The division of labour on Swiss family farms: negotiations and challenges 

Häberli, Isabel; Jurt, Christine
Berner Fachhochschule BFH, Switzerland

Workshop Abstract:

Strategies of farming families are influenced by their perception of the farm situation, their roles but also social, cultural, political, economic and ecological opportunities and risks. Our findings are based on social anthropological research on Swiss family farms. In semi-structured interviews and focus group discussions farmer women’s and men’s perceptions of their division of labour, roles, as well as farm and family strategies have been investigated. One focus lay on the development and negotiation of the division of labour.

The division of labour on Swiss farms is strongly gendered. In the cases studied, we found a clear separation of working domains. On the one hand women’s domain of household and care work, on the other hand men’s domain of agricultural production. But this division of labour is also lived in diverse shapes. Some tasks like child care are increasingly negotiable between man and woman, as results show. However, other tasks are not negotiable, like cleaning tasks or engine repair.

Interestingly the division of labour on Swiss family farms is rarely negotiated within the couple or between family members. Influence of existing role models, farming family traditions and values is strong. Farm members optimise in their own domain, instead of negotiating with each other for a new distribution of tasks. To reduce workload, family external labour is hired (trainees, internships, employees). For farms in mountain regions these optimising strategies are faster reaching their limits. One challenge for mountain farms is less affordability and availability of employees. Long and time-consuming ways to farm external jobs, as well as lack of child care institutions are other challenges - especially for women - for a sustainable division of labour. Insights on perceptions and needs of mountain farming population are necessary for adaptation to ongoing changes. 

ID: 547
Workshop & Poster
The literary geography of the Alps – Cultural tourism inspired by the works of contemporary authors

Streifeneder, Thomas1; Piatti, Barbara2
EURAC, Italy; 2Imaginary Wanderings Association

Workshop and Poster Abstract:

The Alps represent a vital element of our collective imaginary, supplied by one of their greatest cultural treasures: their representation in thousands of literary works. There is a high number of literary texts that deal with transnational phenomena (e.g. mobility, tourism, mountaineering) as well as specific issues linked to the reality of mountains (e.g. mountain farming, handcraft skills etc.). An increasing number of texts deal with the transformation of the Alpine area due to the megatrends such as climate change, demographic change, urbanisation and globalisation.

The workshop is dedicated to literary geography and the representation of the Alps in literary texts. The focus is on contemporary Alpine works and literature between 2000 and 2019. The general aim is to get an overview of running initiatives and projects dedicated to the literary geography of the Alps during this period of time. Participants should provide contributions on specific questions that are linked to what Piatti (2008) called “The entering of the geospace into fiction”: Which are the approaches different authors and genres applied to describe certain geographies and topographies of the Alps? How and which are the Alpine-specific topics described, e.g. mountains and alpine pastures in general?Is it possible to register similarities, variations and divergences of these topics throughout the Alps in contemporary literature? Which stereotypes appear again and again? Which areas or places have been repeatedly been described by several authors and why?


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