TRAMed: Transhumances in the Mediterranean

The research initiative 'Mediterranean Transhumances' is concerned with assessing ongoing dynamics affecting pastoralism in the Mediterranean, so to provide a more effective understanding of the opportunities, the risks and the difficulties related to the increasing presence of immigrants in this domain. The aim is to contribute to the development of appropriate policies at local as well as at European level.In third millennium Europe, agricultural activities are increasingly carried out by foreign workers, who contribute their skills and experience to a sector that has been showing limited attractiveness to new European generations – despite the fact that food production and land management are two basic societal functions.Such phenomenon is visible throughout the European Union - from milk supply chains, with significant presence of Indian and Pakistani immigrants, to picking activities undertaken by African seasonal workers to other sectors with other groups more or less specialized in specific activities.Pastoralism represents a specific case of this phenomenon, with a significant and growing presence of immigrants on European pasturelands, especially during the period of seasonal transhumance. Such dynamic is common to southern European countries - Italy, but also Spain, Greece and France – as pastoralism is a longstanding and traditional activity in the Mediterranean setting.The recent reform of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) allocates increasing emphasis on the proper management of mountainous areas, agro-ecologically fragile territories and their biodiversity –often inhabited and operated by shepherds. These territories provide as well important opportunities for the tourism market which benefits from local natural resources. In addition, the typical quality meat as well as dairy products provided by pastoral systems, often with organic and geographic certification, are on increasing demand by consumers.While we face thus a growing societal demand for the services as well as the products of pastoralism, this is not reflected by improving living and working conditions of shepherds in neither economic, nor social terms.Current dynamics rather indicate that the sons of shepherds often tend to opt out from the sector and look for alternative livelihoods and professions - leaving thus pasturelands exposed to a lack of generational change.

Συμμετέχοντες ερευνητές και προσωπικό: 
Ομάδα Έργου: 
Dr. Michele Nori
Ημερομηνία Έναρξης: 
2 015
Ημερομηνία Λήξης: 
2 017
Marie Curie ES706