Examination of Witnesses

Part of Agriculture Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 2:00 pm on 25th October 2018.

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Professor Marsden:

Clearly, that is an institutional question. There are a lot of institutional questions that this implies that may not eventually need to go into the Bill, but it does obviously have institutional implications.

In my view, all of this is leading to more place-based systems of integrated management of land and the biosphere. One way or another, with bottom-up partnerships or with some level of regional sensitivity, we have to manage regional diversity in the land base of the UK. That means the landholders and stakeholders being fostered to come together in different ways, not necessarily through a top-down, dirigiste infrastructure, but to develop whole tracts of land—not just a farm, but whole regions—such that we have catchments and regions that are much more sustainable and that are delivering the big goals on climate change as well as individual farm landscape. There is a big institutional challenge here to get local diversity and regional diversity at the heart of these sorts of policies.