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Contribution of Traditional Farming to Ecosystem Services Provision: Case Studies from Slovakia

Author

Listed:
  • Jana Špulerová

    () (Institute of Landscape Ecology of the Slovak Academy of Sciences, P.O. Box 254, Štefanikova 3, 814 99 Bratislava, Slovakia)

  • František Petrovič

    () (Department of Ecology and Environmental Sciences, Faculty of Natural Sciences, Constantine the Philosopher University in Nitra, Tr. A. Hlinku 1, 949 01 Nitra, Slovakia)

  • Peter Mederly

    () (Department of Ecology and Environmental Sciences, Faculty of Natural Sciences, Constantine the Philosopher University in Nitra, Tr. A. Hlinku 1, 949 01 Nitra, Slovakia)

  • Matej Mojses

    () (Institute of Landscape Ecology of the Slovak Academy of Sciences, branch Nitra, Akademická 2, 949 01 Nitra, Slovakia)

  • Zita Izakovičová

    () (Institute of Landscape Ecology of the Slovak Academy of Sciences, P.O. Box 254, Štefanikova 3, 814 99 Bratislava, Slovakia)

Abstract

The main aim of this study is to assess the benefits provided by the ecosystems of traditional agricultural landscapes (TAL) and compare them to the outputs of large-scale agriculture. Assessment of ecosystem services (ES) was performed in four case-study areas situated in Slovakia, representing different types of TAL: Viticultural landscape, meadow–pasture landscape, and agricultural landscape with dispersed settlements and mosaics of orchards. The methodological approach was focused on assessment of all the principal types of ES—regulation and maintenance, provisioning, and cultural. Differences in the provision of ES due to the impact of different practices and intensities of agricultural landscape management were subsequently assessed and compared. The results show that TAL are generally more diverse and balanced regarding ES provision, mainly because of their varied patterns and their related functions. In particular they play an important role in water retention and the prevention of soil erosion—both important with respect to changes in climate. Modern intensive agriculture is principally able to fulfil the production functions. Support for traditional farming, landscape diversification and small-scale agricultural management is vital for enhancing the values of rural regions. Such measures could become key drivers for sustainable agricultural management in Slovakia, and elsewhere.

Suggested Citation

  • Jana Špulerová & František Petrovič & Peter Mederly & Matej Mojses & Zita Izakovičová, 2018. "Contribution of Traditional Farming to Ecosystem Services Provision: Case Studies from Slovakia," Land, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 7(2), pages 1-24, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:gam:jlands:v:7:y:2018:i:2:p:74-:d:152107
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. repec:taf:clarxx:v:42:y:2017:i:5:p:498-507 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Jeffrey M. Peterson & Richard N. Boisvert & Harry de Gorter, 2002. "Environmental policies for a multifunctional agricultural sector in open economies," European Review of Agricultural Economics, Foundation for the European Review of Agricultural Economics, vol. 29(4), pages 423-443, December.
    3. repec:eee:ecomod:v:295:y:2015:i:c:p:31-41 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. repec:eee:enscpo:v:57:y:2016:i:c:p:50-59 is not listed on IDEAS
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    traditional agricultural landscapes; traditional farming; ecosystem services; biodiversity; Slovakia;

    JEL classification:

    • Q15 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Land Ownership and Tenure; Land Reform; Land Use; Irrigation; Agriculture and Environment
    • Q2 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Renewable Resources and Conservation
    • Q24 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Renewable Resources and Conservation - - - Land
    • Q28 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Renewable Resources and Conservation - - - Government Policy
    • Q5 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics
    • R14 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Land Use Patterns
    • R52 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Regional Government Analysis - - - Land Use and Other Regulations

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