International Conference



Venice and Comelico valley, Dolomites
June 21-22-23 2018

What do mountains produce?

For a long time, European mountain areas have produced goods in relation with their specific environmental features. Mines and forests, meadows, pastures and streams have permitted the export of minerals and timber, agricultural and manufacturing products, as well as handcrafts, to the surrounding plains. Production has sustained local communities, while modelling the landscape. During the 20th century, many mountain areas had to deal with more competitive surrounding areas. More recently, mountains have been rediscovered mainly as producers of environmental, tourist, cultural ecosystem services.

Today, confronted with globalization and climate change, we may question whether mountains are going, once again, to produce goods. What kind of goods? How can they be recognized and become visible? What connections are there between material and immaterial production and mountains environment, cultures, socio-spatial specificity? What interactions between the mountains and their surrounding areas?

The conference will deal with some priority topics:

  • Specificity of producing goods and services in the mountains, cultural production included;
  • Landscapes and places of production;
  • Actors (producers, consumers, local and extra-local recipients) and strategies of production;
  • Flows, networks, production chains and energy, infrastructure and culture exchange within mountain areas or in relation to other surrounding and metropolitan areas;
  • Public policies and development actions.

Through theoretical contributions and presentations of case studies, special focus will be given to processes and transformations which occurred in the past, to current dynamics and to design strategies and policies for the future.


Due to their specific nature, mountain areas require cross and interdisciplinary approaches. Hence, the conference has a strong multidisciplinary character, being addressed to scholars and researchers, institutes and research centres within the fields of geography, history, economy, social sciences, environmental sciences, earth sciences and design disciplines, with the aim of sharing knowledge and producing new interdisciplinary research questions.

The final round-table will open the debate among researchers, experts, public institutions and local agencies, producers, and citizens, on topics such as products, services, actors and production chains of the mountains.


The conference is open for participation to everyone interested in the topics.

Mountains scientists are invited to contribute with an oral communication, submitting an abstract of max 3,000 characters or 500 words in one of the official languages of the conference (Italian, English), compiling the online form (, including a maximum of 5 bibliographic references and a brief biography of the authors. The Scientific Committee of the conference will select the best proposals and include them in the conference sessions. The selected contributions of the authors registered to the conference will be included in the official conference schedule and will be published in the abstract book with ISBN. A volume containing the Conference Proceedings will follow.

The participants are required to pay an entry fee of € 80 (€ 40 for students under 35). The fee includes lunches, dinners, coffee breaks, the Friday fieldtrip and the coach transfers between Venice and Comelico valley. The abstract book will be distributed to participants for free.


The conference will be held in Venice, at the IUAV University of Venice, and in Comelico valley, at the headquarters of the Foundation “Centro Studi Transfrontaliero del Comelico e Sappada”. Comelico valley is a disadvantaged area of the North-Eastern Dolomites included in the National Strategy for the “Aree Interne”, placed at the national border between Italy and Austria.

Venice is well connected by train or plane with the main Italian and European cities. Comelico valley is 150 km far from Venice, and can be reached by public transport (train + bus). Registered participants can use the free scheduled transfer from Venice to Comelico and viceversa.


20/11/2017 Call for papers
05/02/2018 Deadline abstracts submission
28/02/2018 Acceptance
26/04/2018 Provisional program
12/05/2018 Deadline for registration
21-23/06/2018 The Conference
31/10/2018 Paper submission for the Conference Proceedings



Mauro Pascolini (Università di Udine), Ester Cason Angelini (Fondazione Giovanni Angelini), Benedetta Castiglioni (Università di Padova), Viviana Ferrario (Università Iuav di Venezia), Mauro Marzo (Università Iuav di Venezia), Sebastiano Parmegiani (Società Alpina Friulana), Davide Pettenella (Università di Padova), Roland Psenner (Universität Innsbruck)


Viviana Ferrario, Mauro Marzo
with con Marcella Benedetti, Viola Bertini, Fabrizio D’Angelo, Chrysafina Geronta, Samereh Nouri, Maria Martini Barzolai, Nicola Stecca, Andrea Turato, Margherita Valcanover

Università Iuav di Venezia
Department of Architecture and Arts
ClusterLAB Paesaggi culturali · Cultural landscapes


Università Iuav di Venezia, Palazzo Badoer (

Palazzo Poli de Pol, San Pietro di Cadore (


  • 20/11/2017

    Call for papers
  • 05/02/2018

    Deadline abstracts submission
  • 28/02/2018

  • 26/04/2018

    Provisional program
  • 12/05/2018

    Deadline for registration
  • 21-23/06/2018

    The Conference
  • 31/10/2018

    Paper submission for the Conference Proceedings