mcr | project I

Foto: Patrick Reitinger
Foto: Patrick Reitinger

The international research project Management of Crossborder Rurality | Bavaria Bohemia 1990 2020 evaluates spatial development processes in both Bavaria and Czech Republic after the ending of the Cold War. It is the first of its type and uses a transnational research perspective, while its research approach is interdisciplinary and applied. The project is located at the interface of historical geography, political sciences and sociology, connecting historical and contemporary perspectives and working both qualitative as well as quantitative in sense of a method triangulation.

Research perspective

  1. Foundation for the evaluation study is the application and further development of the Landatlas, a map categorizing rural areas in Germany. It was developed as part of the project „Monitoring of Rural Areas“ at the Johann Heinrich von Thünen-Institute for Rural Areas in Braunschweig. Additionally to the data for Germany, it is aimed to expand the „Landatlas“ and apply it to those western regions of Czech Republic that border with Bavaria. Furthermore a time series emerges, which, in a small scale, displays and compares the rural development processes in Bavaria and Czech Republic during the post-socialist transformation phase. Based on this statistical analysis, maps of the transboundary study region are produced by application of Geographic Information Systems (GIS). These maps then can be used for political guidances and consultations.
  2. Within a detailed interview study cooperating with political, economic, administrativ and civil agents of the Bavarian-Czech liaison, agent related perspectives on trans-boundary development processes of the past 30 years will be spacially differentiated and reconstructed, scaled in the context of the political multi-level governance system.
  3. A quantitative survey of Bavarian and Czech majors aims to examine and evaluate those local political management tools of the border municipalities, which were applied since the ending of cold war.

Map collection and both qualitative and quantitative data will be connected and interpreted based on the scientific concepts of shrinking regions and learning regions. Through this, transnational knowledge networks can be worked out and show, how political and administrative development strategies of the passed 30 years in Bavaria and Czech left their traces in the spacial structure of the common border region. Based on this analysis, prognostic guidances for further rural development in the study region can be developed.