Debating the future of English uplands: an analysis of competing policy agendas involved in rural policy change

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Title: Debating the future of English uplands: an analysis of competing policy agendas involved in rural policy change
Authors: Arblaster, Kathryn Elizabeth
Item Type: Thesis or dissertation
Abstract: The uplands of England are highly valued landscapes and have been powerfully shaped by agricultural practices over the centuries. Different agricultural policy discourses have impacted on the way upland farmland has been managed with both positive and negative environmental consequences. Currently, new debates are emerging about land use in the uplands, sparked by the increased interest in issues such as climate change, food security and the provision of public benefits. This thesis considered how the future of the English uplands is currently being framed at a time when these competing policy agendas are emerging. Through literature review and stakeholder interviews a number of findings have arisen. It appears that whilst food security is likely to influence upland debates to some extent, the role of climate change is likely to have a far greater influence on upland land use decisions. A key aspect that is likely to be developed is the role of the uplands in carbon and water management. This thesis drew upon different scenarios for the future of the upland and asked which are the most likely or desirable in the light of changing policy interests. There appear to be a number of possible futures for the uplands depending on how relevant policies evolve. The most desired future among stakeholders is one in which the uplands become viewed as ‘Environmentally Favoured Areas’, with an emphasis on the ecosystem services they provide. A clear need is highlighted for further research into how to value and provide for such services.
Issue Date: 2010
Date Awarded: Sep-2010
Supervisor: Potter, Clive
Author: Arblaster, Kathryn Elizabeth
Department: Centre for Environmental Policy
Publisher: Imperial College London
Qualification Level: Doctoral
Qualification Name: Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Appears in Collections:Centre for Environmental Policy PhD theses

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