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Generic Regional Development Strategies from Local Stakeholders’ Scenarios - an Alpine Village Experience

Wolfgang Loibl, Austrian Institute of Technology, Department Foresight and Policy Development, Regional and Infrastrucure Policy Unit
Ariane Walz, Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK); WSL Institute for Snow and Avalanche Research SLF

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Abstract

The article discusses the participatory elaboration of strategies for sustainable regional development in an Alpine tourist region in Austria to cope with global change effects evolving locally, considering climate change, economic change as well as (local) societal change. Local stakeholders in an Alpine village in the Montafon region contributed in workshops to achieve the final results: participant teams conducted system analyses of the regional system to explore key elements of the region. Narrative scenarios described possible positive and negative development trends and indicated the critical issues controlling future development; 3D-images of landscape transition simulations show the consequences of certain development directions. Alternative development directions supported the local stakeholders to elaborate regional development strategies. In the end, the scientist team derived generic strategies for Alpine regions based on the locally developed strategy bundle. The article presents the intention, progress and outcome of the participatory approach and elaborates the potential to derive generic strategies from local ones and discusses the possibly occurring conflicts regarding cross-scale transfers of these local strategies. Overall, tourism was seen as a key element for future regional development, which can on the one hand derogate Alpine regions and is on the other hand threatened by climate change and diminution of landscape attractiveness. The suggested development strategies will help to cope with global change issues mitigating the negative consequences on the local society and environment.

Key words

alpine regions development, participatory scenario approach, regional development, generic strategies
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Ecology and Society. ISSN: 1708-3087