In 2017 a network was formed - IFLA Europe Med_Net working group - that brings together countries bordering the Mediterranean or that share its climatic and environmental characteristics. The aim of the working group is to optimize the work of landscape architects on similar issues by concentrating their efforts, increasing awareness and ensuring a more efficient communication, while saving energy and resources.

The constituent group is made up of delegates from Portugal, Spain, France, Greece (plus Cyprus) and Israel with Italy as coordinator. At the beginning of 2019 the delegates of Slovenia, Croatia and Turkey have joined in, completing the number of Mediterranean countries of IFLA Europe. Next step is to include the delegates of the Mediterranean countries of IFLA Middle East and IFLA Africa.

The first meeting of the working group was held in Lecce, Italy, in June 2018. On this occasion the mission and objectives of the group’s work have been defined, a schedule and agenda were set and opportunities for the first concrete activities have been drafted.


The main reason why we have come together is that we all share a strong concern about the challenges regarding:

  • Climate/Environment
  • Social/Cultural issues
  • Political/Economical issues
  • Landscape education

What is our mission?

  • To share the cultural and environmental values of challenges common to all
  • To identify the principal topics and opportunities of the specific conditions common to all
  • To declare the Mediterraneity of these issues
  • To develop a network based on sharing experiences and exchanging knowledges
  • To share initiatives, information and documentation on educational matters

The group meets twice a year: the Spring Meeting is held in rotation in the member countries. A topic related conference reporting the member countries projects will be scheduled in parallel. The second annual meeting will coincide with the IFLA Europe General Assembly. In this Autumn Meeting the working group intends to choose the arguments that express the moments concerns and to seize opportunities to go public efficiently and draw specific partners in. This “topic of the year” will be the core issue for the group’s work on which the member countries will focus their efforts (research, events, communication…) as and how they consider best for their specific interest. During the remaining time work will be carried out according to the specific opportunities and needs of the member countries. The results of all the works and researches will be shared and made available to the members of the Med_net.

Med_Net at IFLA Europe Gen Assembly Antalya 2019
Med_Net at IFLA Europe General Assembly Antalya 2019

Members of Med_Net project:

  • Uta Zorzi, AIAPP, Italy, Med_Net Co-ordinator
  • Darija Perkovic, Croatia
  • Katerina Gkoltsiou, Greece
  • Ariane Delilez, France
  • Nikola Watté, France
  • Leor Lovinger, Israel
  • Simone Scuderi, Italy
  • Marlene Chahine, Lebanon
  • Margarida Cancela D’Abreu, Portugal
  • Manuel Sanchez, Spain
  • Urban Svegl, Slovenia
  • Sukran Sahin, Turkey
  • Daniela Micanovic, IFLA Europe

Med_Net meetings:

2018 Med_Net, Lecce, ITALY - Landscape architects in the Mediterranean countries - opportunities and challenges

2019 Med_Net, Tel Aviv, ISRAEL

2021 Med_Net, Marseille, FRANCE - postponed

Med_net theme 2021/2022: TREES_list of
macro areas

The theme TREES is divided into the following macro areas indicating lines of research and communication. According to these macro areas the member countries of the IFLA
Europe Med_net Working Group will organized events and actions during 2021/2022.

1_Trees in urban environment (public space)
1a_ecosystem benefits (microclimate, sound absorption, hydrogeological balance, ...)
1b_the species to be used; needs for space, exposure, soil,…; resistance to particular conditions (flooding, draught, pollution, salinity, ...)
1c_care of the existing arboreal heritage; proper maintenance, proper pruning, root protection, ...
1d_problems and solutions (ex: roots that raise the pavement); climate change and consequences

Designing landscapes with trees
2a_landscape aspects; identity, character and habit; functions;
2b_compositive aspects (lines, points, volumes, ...); scales and proportions;
2c_different trees for different situations; the right tree in the right place;
2d_social aspects

3_The tree as a system
3a_woods and forests
_cultivation for income: agricultural; silvo-pastoral; renewable energy;
3c_cultivation for utilitarian/ecosystemic reasons: extra-urban avenues; soil consolidation; windbreak; acoustic barrier;
3d_cultivation for therapeutic uses: silvotherapy; healing gardens, tree hugging, ...
3e_hosting of biodiversity

4_Trees as heritage
4a_historical parks and gardens
4b_material heritage: monumental specimens; ancient trees; primary forests;
4c_intangible heritage: history and stories; myths; meanings (religious, cultural, traditional, ...); cultivation systems/techniques of the past;
4d_iconography; trees and the arts (literature, music, performance, ...)
4e_treatments, care and cure of over mature trees

5_Trees and risk management
5a_forest fires
5b_in case of floods, landslides, landslides, storms;
5c_stability of trees; VTA assessment techniques;
5d_phytopathology of trees (knowledge and care); spread of parasites, antagonistic pathogens;
5e_consequences of climate change
5f_meccanic damage and correct pruning

6_Management of trees
6a_legislative aspects, regulatory aspects (regulations in force at different institutional levels)
6b_economic aspects
6c_maintenance + protection of trees

We understand that in many countries the wider public, but also a good part of the decision makers in various institutions have only a very incomplete knowledge of trees, of their needs and living conditions. The IFLA Europe Med_net Working Group considers important to offer the necessary information to facilitate the understanding of the “world of trees” to different groups of users and various levels of knowledge.

7_How do trees live? (education, information, communication)
7a_program of landscape education in schools (forestry projects in schools’ exterior spaces, guided visits, …)
7b_disseminate environmental and landscape knowledge with the general public
7c_inform administrators, politicians and decision makers

© Background photo by KAROLINA WASZEK

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