Research project
18 | monthsFOO_TER

Relationship between food and territory

Related toSpoke 01

Principal investigators
Valentina Maria Paola Raimondi

Other partecipantsStefanella Stranieri, Donatella Privitera, Francesca Galli, Alessio Cavicchi
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Task involved

Task 1.2.1.

Analysis of Italian food environments at national, regional, and local level with respect to socio-economic and geographical characteristics.

Project deliverables


Report on Italian food environments with respect to socio-economic and geographical characteristics (M12)


Report on good practices related to sustainability policies in food environments (M24).

Interaction with other spokes

State of the art

Overall, the agricultural value of landscape is multifaceted and includes both economic and social/cultural considerations. GIs represents one of the strategic pillars of the agri-food economy in Europe. The explanations for the success of this policy measure relate mainly to i) its capacity to act as differentiation tool and create a premium price for the certified product quality attributes; ii) its ability to protect, both domestically and internationally, the names of specific agricultural and food products; iii) the positive impacts of such policy tool on regional economies in terms of the preservation of local skills, the promotion of tourism and the conservation of jobs in rural areas; and iv) the improvement in the organisation of economic activities through more coordinated forms of transactions.

Operation plan

The study of the relationship between food and space in the challenge of local economic development and cultural identity is explored through a critical reflection on the role of some narratives (tradition, identity, authenticity, etc.) and policies (brands, agri-food policies, etc.) by using case studies that analyze relationship between food and territory in Sicily region and focus on the identity role of food in relation to tourist attractiveness, and the importance of tourist narratives and their interaction with local community.
Moreover, the relationship between GIs and innovation at territorial level is investigated focusing on the “distance-to-the frontier” model, by taking into consideration several databases that include information on GIs and agri-food patents for 265 EU regions (NUTS2 level).

Expected results

The research attempts to open up unexplored interpretations of the relationship between food and territory, and to contribute to the GI literature investigating the extent to which GI policies contribute to the prosperity and growth of rural areas at the EU regional level.
Consistently with the logic of the distance-to-the-frontier model, we expect that GIs tend to reduce innovation in regions close to the technological frontier but spur them in laggard regions.