Day 1 at Resilience Conference Day in Montpellier

Today we had 14 parallel off-site sessions, so we can hardly report on all. So, I just start to share some impressions from the session on “Pastoralism” where we made the most distant journey from our conference site in Montpellier. On our one-hour bus tour, we already were introduced to main local land uses which are wine yards and sheep herding.

Wine yard in front of volcano-originated mountain.

Wine yard in front of a volcano-originated mountain.

At our destination, local practitioners presented their long history of communal action to use the land together and even withstand governmental pressures to sell off and privatize land. Two groups (one from Larzac, one from Cévennes) reported on how farmers / livestock breeders in this region rent the land from the commune. Both organizations aimed at overcoming the right of possessing land and trading land as a commodity. This enabled much better quality of land use and sheep production. In Larzac, the leases to farmers where recently prolonged till 2045. During the last decades, these institutions survived a large transformation from wool/manure production to milk/meat production.


Sheep herd on pasture in La Salveta.

Within the scientific presentations, we also saw some nice model examples aiming at operationalizing resilience as an assessment tool. It was interesting that most studies were evaluating resilience on the communal level.

Besides the beautiful view and the local insights, we were hosted with locally produced food and I can really recommend the organic cheese from sheep in Larzac!

For all people who like to read about the general conference opening, just visit the site from our colleagues.