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Land use conflicts: causes and solving strategies


Different spatial claims may lead to conflicts between different usages. Our project explores, how such land use conflicts emerge and how they can be resolved or avoided. Out of that, we derive strategies and measures for conflict management and we will develop a guideline for the praxis.

The aim of the project is to recognise competitions between spatial claims and develop strategies for early recognition, reconciliation and (where possible) avoiding of conflicts. The project describes and typifies land use conflicts and explores, on the basis of which features they can be recognised early on. Further, it analyses strategies, measures and political and planning instruments, which can be used to reconcile or avoid land use conflicts.

The project is divided into four parts:

  1. written survey of all cantons ought to deliver an overview over the land use conflicts of the last ten years as well as on typical conflict lines and -stages.
  2. In the two case-study regions Luzerner Seetal/Aargauer Freiamt and Linthebene (Glarus/St. Gallen), we will explore some selected land use conflicts more in detail.
  3. We will develop a guideline for the praxis, which shows how usage conflicts can be recognised early on, avoided or resolved.
  4. A workshop with exponents of the case-study regions as well as other experts supports the transfer of knowledge into the praxis.

The results of our studies will be used in the program synthesis to evaluate the practicability of landscape development scenarios regarding possible land use conflicts. For the case-study regions, the project delivers references on critical constellations of actors, planning regulations or other institutional basic conditions, which can intensify or cause land use conflicts. In addition, the project delivers examples of good practice in conflict management and shows solving strategies on how different spatial claims in the case-study regions can be handled. 

Project Team

WSL, Research Group Regional Economics and Development in the Research Unit Economics and Social Sciences

  • Corina Willi
  • Fabian Waltert