AEP-22306 Landscape Economics and Politics


Credits 6.00

Teaching methodContact hours
Independent study0
Course coordinator(s)dr. ir. JHM Peerlings
Lecturer(s)dr. ir. JHM Peerlings
prof. dr. ir. ES van Leeuwen
A Pellis MSc
dr. AM Rijke
Examiner(s)prof. dr. ir. ES van Leeuwen
A Pellis MSc
dr. ir. JHM Peerlings

Language of instruction:



Urban and rural landscapes are able to provide many different goods and services to society and have a multi-faceted character, which includes natural, cultural and societal values. Landscapes are also economic assets which can offer significant opportunities for the territorial and economic development of metropolitan areas. For example, they serve as a location of economic activities like housing and recreation. Landscapes may also be contested spaces, to which people attach diverse symbolic, economic and political value. Questions of memory and cultural identity, for instance, are often related to the production and the 'conservation' of specific landscapes, but also to their future developments.
Furthermore, landscape and land use are linked, the variety of land uses shapes the landscape. Landscapes are therefore not static, but they are constantly transformed due to planning and design activities, by both public and private actors, but also by the actual use of the people living and working in those same spaces. Questions of belonging and identity have in fact important implications for the economic and political understanding and practicing of landscapes. Land use is thus determined by a wide range of both economic and political factors that are often interlinked. For example, land demand increases because of a growing world population and a stimulation of bio-fuel use. Because of competing claims, specific policies are often implemented to 'govern' metropolitan landscapes. However, these policies are sometimes contested or resisted, especially when governments and markets fail to adequately address these competing claims. For all these reasons, the economics and the politics of landscape need to be understood in depth by planners, policy makers and landscape architects, together with the related implications in terms of landscape governance and questions of social inclusiveness, participation, gender and ethics.
The aim of the course is to provide knowledge about and insight in the economic and political aspects of landscapes use. The questions addressed focus on:
- l
and use;
- optimal location of economic activities;
- valuation of landscapes;
- financing location development;
- rural development;
- urban-rural interactions;
- the politics and policy of landscape in all its spatial implications and at the different scales;
- understanding people's actual use of landscape and the cultural and political meanings attached to it;
- the gendered, multicultural and ethical dimension in landscape shaping and use.

The target group for this course is students of the bachelor programme Landscape Architecture and Planning (BLP) but students of other programmes interested in landscape economics and politics are welcome. It is the only course in the BLP programme were the main focus is on economic analysis of landscapes and its policies. The course is a second year course in the common part of the programme.

Learning outcomes:

After successful completion of this course students are expected to be able to:
- reproduce the economic and political descriptions and theories concerning the economics and politics of landscapes;
- apply theories on land use, landscape valuation, landscape development and location in exercises;
- apply theories on the cultural politics of landscape and reflect on their geographical implications;
- explain the economics and politics of landscapes;
- assess specific economic and political aspects of actual developments in the area of landscape economics and politics; 
- understand the gendered, multicultural and ethical dimension in landscape shaping and use.


attending lectures;
- attending tutorials;
- studying the study material;
- doing exercises.


Three tests (either with open questions or in the form of presentations) of which the average result comprises the final mark. There is a minimum mark of 5 required for each of the tests.


The course material can be found in Brightspace.

Compulsory for: BLPLandscape Architecture and PlanningBSc3WD