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Date du début: 31 mai 2006, Date de fin: 30 déc. 2007 PROJET  TERMINÉ 

Main objective of project ECOMEMAQ is to promote the acquaintance of the Mediterranean Maquis, a patrimony of inestimable value common to all Mediterranean insular and coastal areas and to protect and valorise this by way of a shared policy and methodology of sustainable management. The project proposes the development of a reticular system, the “Ecomuseum District”, in which several pilot project will be implemented and a stable network will be created, taking due account of transfer of knowledge and experiences to (northern) African countries. The Mediterranean maquis is an endogenous natural resource of the Mediterranean territories. Landscape as well as its products are prestigious resources for the local population: traditionally especially women take profit of the herbs for culinary, medical and beauty purposes and cultural significance of the herbs and shrubs are widespread. Mediterranean plant biodiversity is to a large extent the result of a traditional and harmonious use of the environment. However, since the end of the nineteenth century, this balance has been upset in most places by over-exploitation of natural resources or a general shift away from the land - two processes that have had different but equally harmful consequences for the conservation of species and habitats. Especially mass tourism, concentrated in the summer, is debit to this process, which should therefore be tried to stop by a conscious valorization of the natural heritage. The ECOMEMAQ project intends to start such a valorization, by applying an innovative methodology called ‘ecomuseum district’ and configurating the created districts into a transnational network comprising all territories situated around the Mediterranean Sea. Specific objectives are: 1. To Develop one ecological Network among areas of the Mediterranean Maquis with a transnational and Community relevance able to increase and exchange the knowledge and information of the participating territories in the ecology and the biology of species and in innovative methodologies for environmental management and sustainable development of the territories. 2. To enhance the involvement of public institutions participating in ECOMEMAQ in order to increase the number and quality of public actions addressed to the safeguard of the Mediterranean Maquis, supplying them with best practice knowledge based on project’s pilot experiences. 3. To create and test the Ecomuseum District Management Model for the protection and valorization of the Mediterranean Maquis, intended to increase the safeguard of this heritage in accordance with the sustainable development of the territories and to produce better knowledge of the value of this natural heritage by the local stakeholders and inhabitants. To this end, several in-depth studies will be undertaken in order to identify the botanic variety within the maquis, its economic value and potential, its cultural significance, its legal protection and a map (GIS) will be created. These studies will serve the elaboration of a Model for Ecomuseum District Development, which will form the base for a series of pilot project to be carried out in three selected areas: Crete, Puglia and Sicily. Meanwhile, a stable Transnational Network will be set up, which will be launched at one of the many dissemination activities within the project. It offers a long-lasting opportunity for Mediterranean territories on both sides of the sea to deepen their knowledge on their heritage, exchange their experiences and learn from those matured within the project. Special invitations will be made as well to representatives from countries like Gabon, Ghana and Angola, where the valorization of their botanic traditions can be a major support for local community development and women’s autonomy. The project is expected to benefit especially local population of coastal areas and insular ones in particular; women (to be) engaged in manufacturing of the characteristic herbs and their seeds and scions; and local authorities and other public and private stakeholders called to enhance sustainable development of their territories. Indirectly also tourists are addressed, who are interested to know more about the naturalistic and cultural significance of the landscapes they are visiting. Finally research institutions benefit from the opportunities of deepening and exchanging know-how and creating partnerships with local communities


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