Wanted: Students for an international experience!

Every year, the Rural Sociology Group participates in a two week intensive programme on rural development in the EU. A diverse group of students from various European countries (a.o. Portugal, Poland, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Spain, Lithuania, Slovenia) work together on a case study. Through lectures and field trips scientific and practical knowledge will be aquired and then implemented in the case study analysis. See past experiences of Marlies, Petra and Wiebke
 
This year the IP is organised by the university of Padova and takes place in San Vito Di Cadore in the Italian Dolomites. The general topic is: “the role of agriculture in territorial identity and competitiveness of rural areas”. More specificly, the general question is related to how these (territorial identity and competitiveness) contribute to rural development in the Dolomites (Alps region). For more information on the content see below. 
 
Are you a student of Wageningen University and looking for an international learning experience? Then sign up for two intensive weeks from 3 to 16 April 2011! For subsciption or more information contact Els Hegger (els.hegger@wur.nl). 
 
General content of the IP 

During the study trips, students/tutors have to take contact with local government, farmers, members of organisations etc. in order to identify the territorial identity of the studied region. Students and tutors will together develop a questionnaire in advance, and it will be their task to ask the right questions in order to unravel the territorial identity. Students need to be innovative, active, inquisitive and enquiring to fulfill the tasks. The students and tutors will sleep in these study regions. After these 3 days, they get back to the big group and work on region presentations.

After the region presentations, groups will be reformulated; new groups consist of at least one member from each previous group. Each new group focuses on a specific topic in a transversal analysis: that topic is studied over the different regions, and each group presents these results on the last day, followed by a general discussion. The 6 topics which groups have to focus on include the relation of agriculture with the rest of the economy, the environment, the social cohesion (with farmers, with rest of region), tourism etc.

The first 3 days, the students and tutors will receive lectures related to the bigger structures around the Dolomites Region that take into account different aspects of the territorial identity. Also lectures on general methodology will be introduced. After this, students will be divided into smaller groups, and each group will visit a chosen region of Belluno Province during 3 days. In order to have fluent contacts, each group will have an Italian student/tutor who takes care of translation etc.

In the second week, students analyse the information related to the specific region in combination with output of the study trips for the whole group and all the information gathered during lectures presented during the IP.

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