Skip to main content
Kent Academic Repository

Changing forests in a changing mediterranean island: forests, fires and heritagisation of the landscape in Serra de Tramuntana, Mallorca.

Maria, Cifre Sabater (2020) Changing forests in a changing mediterranean island: forests, fires and heritagisation of the landscape in Serra de Tramuntana, Mallorca. Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) thesis, University of Kent,. (KAR id:84840)

PDF Other
Language: English

Download this file
[thumbnail of 271Cifre_PhD_THESIS.pdf]


This research aims to study the social, historical and environmental dynamics around forests fires in Serra de Tramuntana, a protected area and UNESCO World Heritage Site in the island of Mallorca, in the Spanish state. From the second half of the twentieth century, and like in other Mediterranean rural areas, Serra de Tramuntana entered into a process of de-agrarisation, which led to the abandonment of many cultivated, pasture and forest lands. Moreover, in 2007, Serra de Tramuntana was conferred the status of Natural Site (Paratge Natural), resulting in the implementation of new land-use regulations and prohibitions which often conflict with local people's land-uses and agroforestry management practices. Due to the changes in land-use and management, the landscape of Serra de Tramuntana has transformed by increased woodland and accumulated dead and living forest biomass. This combination of factors, together with the hot and dry summers, have enhanced an upsurge of large forest fires. In 2013, the largest forest fire ever recorded in the Balearic Islands burned 2,400 hectares of Serra de Tramuntana. Large forest fires, particularly from the 2013 fire, have galvanised public, media, scientific and governmental attention, highlighting the diversity and conflict of perspectives between a wide range of social actors. They have also become a focus for social conflict, and a locus for broader processes of social contestation, negotiation and cooperation linked to environmental change, to land-use and environmental management of the protected area. Combining an analysis of ethnographic, historical and geographical data, this research project aims to understand the social, historical and environmental dimensions of forest fires in Serra de Tramuntana. My research seeks to understand (1) the varying social perspectives about the factors that today contribute to the incidence of large forest fires in Serra de Tramuntana and the possible management solutions for this issue; and (2) how the presence of fire reflects the convergence of multiple social perspectives and actions associated with the use and management of the protected area.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctor of Philosophy (PhD))
Thesis advisor: Alexiades, Miquel
Thesis advisor: Tzanopoulos, Joseph
Thesis advisor: Bicker, Alan
Uncontrolled keywords: environmental anthropology, fire, forest fires, forests, protected areas, nature conservation, Mediterranean, heritagisation
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GF Human ecology. Anthropogeography
Divisions: Divisions > Division of Human and Social Sciences > School of Anthropology and Conservation
Funders: Organisations -1 not found.
SWORD Depositor: System Moodle
Depositing User: System Moodle
Date Deposited: 18 Dec 2020 12:38 UTC
Last Modified: 13 May 2022 10:55 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)

University of Kent Author Information

Maria, Cifre Sabater.

Creator's ORCID:
CReDIT Contributor Roles:
  • Depositors only (login required):

Total unique views for this document in KAR since July 2020. For more details click on the image.