About the project

This project seeks to strengthen European Nature-Regional-Landscape Parks by connecting park associations throughout Europe and promoting the parks’ value towards European decision makers. Up to date information on the tasks and objectives, realised projects and management of European Nature-Regional-Landscape Parks will be collected. In study tours to parks and their associations, knowledge and experiences will be gathered and shared.

The project "Europe’s Nature, Regional, and Landscape Parks" is implemented by the Association of German Nature Parks (Verband Deutscher Naturparke e.V., VDN) in collaboration with EUROPARC Federation. The project sponsor is the German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (Bundesamt für Naturschutz) in cooperation with the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety (Bundesministerium für Umwelt, Naturschutz, Bau und Reaktorsicherheit).

The project runs from October 2014 to July 2017.

A survey to gather up-to-date information

As a first working step, the VDN will carry out a survey amongst Nature-Regional-Landscape Park associations of the European Union member states and some other European countries. In the questionnaire, the associations are asked about the main fields of work and objectives of their parks. What are the park’s activities in the field of nature conservation? What do they do to promote sustainable development of rural areas and sustainable tourism? How are the associations and parks organised and managed? What types of educational programmes do they offer? These and other questions will be asked in an online survey and will later be analysed in detail.

Study visits - to learn from each other

To promote the direct exchange between European Nature-Regional-Landscape Parks, in 2016, the VDN will visit several European park associations and parks. During these study tours, more detailed information and examples will be gathered and good-practice examples will be shared.

The main results of the survey and the visits will be published in a brochure in English and German. Bringing together good examples from across Europe this survey will provide precious information for parks and park associations as well as highlight their value to decision makers. A digital version of the brochure will be available for download on this page.

Events in Brussels and Berlin - to strengthen the profile

Despite their vital importance for the sustainable development of rural areas in Europe, the value and potential of European Nature-Regional-Landscape Parks is largely untapped. Therefore, a key issue of this project is to highlight the importance of these parks for nature conservation, environmental education, sustainable regional development and environment-friendly tourism to politicians and decision makers. The VDN and EUROPARC Federation will present the results of the study in Brussels to members of the European Commission, the European Parliament and other stakeholders, as well as in Berlin to German policy makers.

A book about Europe’s Nature-Regional-Landscape Parks

The project will culminate in a book showing the tasks and objectives, the diversity and the value of European Nature-Regional-Landscape Parks. In this publication, each participating national park association is invited to present its parks and itself in a separate chapter. Furthermore, the main results of the survey and study tours will be summarized and suggestions made to decision makers. It will be the first time that the work and achievements of Europe’s Nature, Regional and Landscape Parks will be presented altogether in one book.