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Le montagne negoziate. Turismo e regolazione territoriale nelle Alpi, 1870-1970



Lorenzetti L.


Delmenico D.



Historical research has widely investigated the origins, characteristics and pathways of the Alpine tourism industry structuring its analysis around the double perspective of supply and demand. However, several of the issues related to the many consequences of the tourism industry on the Alpine world, especially on the environment, still remain open. The research project “Negotiated mountains” analyses the modalities of interaction of local communities involved in touristic activities with the Alpine territories from 1870 to 1970. During this century the touristic practice has spread as a mass phenomenon, changing the ways of enjoying the mountains, an ever-increasing attendance and demand for space allocated to visitors’ accommodation (second homes and holiday apartments).

By comparing two Alpine regions (the Valais and Sondrio province) and two locations (Morgines-Champéry and Madesimo) and by combining different approaches (amongst which a map analysis and oral survey), the project aims at reconstructing and examining the interactions between tourist activities and their regulatory measures, as well as the changes that occured in such interactions. From this perspective, actions and measures taken in order to ensure the land equilibrium, and to restore it if necessary, are also taken into consideration. Land regulation includes all the actions and measures issued from the political action of public entities (i.e. in the form of land planning) as well as managerial or administrative initiatives – both public and private - operating at local or regional level, in a formal or less formal environment, which aim at enabling the use and “governance” of land resources with a social consensus.

Inspired by the new institutionalist approach, land regulation is seen as a result of the interaction between environment and land representatives, institutions, organisations within a land system which is defined and built around touristic activites, the land and real estate property regimes and the environmental context. On the basis of this theoretical framework, the project aims at verifying to which extent the efficiency of land regulation is linked to the institutions and organisations’ ability to manage the intrinsic contradiction derived from the specialisation of land for touristic purposes and the increasing uncertainty of these transactions.

Additional information

Start date
End date
36 Months
Funding sources
Swiss National Science Foundation / Project Funding / Division I - Humanities and Social Sciences