The Convention states that “landscape policy” means an expression by the competent public authorities of general principles, strategies and guidelines that permit the taking of specific measures aimed at the protection, management and planning of landscape.

Among its “general measures”, it also provides that each Party shall undertake to establish procedures for the participation of the general public, local and regional authorities, and other parties with an interest in the definition and implementation of the landscape policies. In particular, Recommendation CM/Rec(2008)3 of the Committee of Ministers to Member States on the guidelines for the implementation of the European Landscape Convention contains a set of theoretical, methodological and practical guidelines intended for Parties to the Convention who wish to draw up and implement landscape policies on the basis of the Convention.

The Convention provides a definition of the terms “protection”, “management” and “planning” of landscapes:

  • “protection” means actions to conserve and maintain the significant or characteristic features of a landscape, justified by its heritage value derived from its natural configuration and/or from human activity;
  • “management” means action, from a perspective of sustainable development, to ensure the regular upkeep of a landscape, so as to guide and harmonise changes which are brought about by social, economic and environmental processes;
  • “planning” means strong forward-looking action to enhance, restore or create landscapes.

The Recommendation CM/Rec(2017)7 of the Committee of Ministers to Member States on the contribution of the European Landscape Convention to the exercise of human rights and democracy with a view to sustainable development recommends that the governments of States Parties to the Convention: frame landscape policies in the long term, so that they take into account the common surroundings for present and future generations; and develop landscape policies throughout the entire territory, so that people can enjoy their surroundings in dignity and without discrimination.

Summary Report on national and regional policies >>