Living Amid the Ruins

Living Amid the Ruins: Archaeological sites as hubs of sustainable development for local communities in Southwest Turkey (LAR) is a research project aimed to help preserving the cultural and natural heritage of Pisidia through the involvement of the local communities. The project was funded by a British Academy Sustainable Development grant, and was implemented under the auspices of the British Institute at Ankara.
This area is increasingly the target of water dam projects, stone quarries, and commercial tree logging that seriously threaten the wildlife and the livelihood of the local people. Over the last thirty years, the flow of migration toward coastal towns has also imperilled the transmission of ancient crafts, cuisine and traditional knowledge, and often the elders are the only surviving repositories of such intangible heritage. Additionally, widespread vandalism and looting have caused significant damage to the numerous archaeological sites in the region. 

LAR was set up with two objectives: (a) understanding the relationship between the people of Pisidia and the archaeological sites that surround them, and (b) understanding how they could be engaged in their safeguard. The creation of the Pisidia Heritage Trail hopes to make these landscapes more accessible to different groups of people, bringing new life and energy into the region and promoting more awareness of this rich heritage. In addition, the growth of alternative tourism may generate social and economic benefits to be channelled in the creation of small-scale hosting activities along the trail.

If you want to hear the stories of modern Pisidians, please have a look at this short documentary which is the product of this research Project.