Action Areas

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Connecting natural and cultural heritage

The identity of places and communities is the result of the interplay between the natural environment and human culture. Acknowledging this intimate and dynamic relationship, MedINA works at the local, national and international level to support the joint understanding, promotion and management of natural and cultural heritage. Using landscape as the platform where nature, culture and communities interact, we promote collaboration amongst diverse experts and apply approaches that link together these crucial elements rather than divide them.

From our work on the cultural values of Mediterranean wetlands to Sacred Natural Sites and the creation of the Vjosa / Aoos River Ecomuseum, we view nature and culture as two sides of the same coin.

Traditional knowledge, which forms part of a community’s cultural identity, refers to a living body of collective wisdom that is developed, sustained and passed on from generation to generation. By working with local communities, MedINA aims to help promote this knowledge especially with regard to agricultural and natural resource management – and blend it with scientific and technological advancements. In this way, we link our past with our future.

From recording and supporting traditional agro-pastoral practices on Lemnos island to working with the transhumant shepherds of the Pindos mountains and restoring micro-dams on the island of Kythera, our aim is to provide locally adapted solutions to critical issues and to build the long-term resilience of both ecosystems and communities.

Traditional knowledge as a source of innovation

Local solutions for sustainable development

The UN’s Sustainable Development Goals are the blueprint for achieving a better and more sustainable future for all. Local solutions that acknowledge the dynamics, history and potential of a given area are crucial in achieving these development goals at community level. MedINA’s ultimate aim in all its project sites is to contribute to sustainable local development by focusing on three important pillars: nature, culture and communities.

From sustainable, community-supported tourism on the island of Kythera to the celebration of the fishing heritage of the Messolonghi lagoon and the promotion of local agricultural products and practices on the island of Lemnos, our work seeks to support cooperation and collaboration within local communities and to enable their empowerment in defining their own path towards a sustainable future for the area.