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Title: Landscape character and public perception: a participatory Historic Landscape Characterisation approach in Northumberland
Authors: Dabaut, Niels
Issue Date: 2021
Publisher: Newcastle University
Abstract: The public perception of landscape character has been recognised and legitimised as a fundamental aspect of landscape policy and research through the European Landscape Convention (ELC). However, the practice of integrating the way communities perceive and value landscape in management decisions remains limited. The aim of this research is to gain a better understanding of how landscape and its historic character is perceived by people and to map and operationalise public perception to inform participatory Historic Landscape Characterisation (HLC). This study uses two qualitative approaches: map-based interviews and walking and talking interviews with local people in two Northumbrian case study areas, Heddon-on-the-Wall and the Wallington Estate, to develop insights into the factors influencing landscape perception. Having gathered and analysed the qualitative data, the findings were incorporated within a GIS designed to inform the HLC project of Northumberland. Three main conclusions were reached as a result of the analysis and discussion of the research: (1) landscape perception must be understood as a dynamic synergy between four dimensions: personal, collective, space and time. (2) The unique combination of these dimensions mean that landscapes are interpreted differently by different people and mean that a landscape is perceived differently by the same individual at specific locations and at specific times. (3) To be included in characterisation processes and to include public perception in landscape management, people’s views cannot be focussed individually but must be generalised in line with the philosophy and principles of HLC. HLC databases form an ideal platform to integrate the multiplicity of views on landscapes and open them up for more focussed discussion during problem-oriented moments in the landscape management process.
Description: Ph. D. Thesis.
Appears in Collections:School of History, Classics and Archaeology

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Dabaut Niels ethesis Final submission.pdfThesis58.72 MBAdobe PDFView/Open
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