Commons in Flandern, 18. und 19. Jahrhundert

„The Historical Evolution of Commons in Flanders: Results from a Microstudy (18th-19th century)“ (Die historische Entwicklung der Commons in Flandern: Ergebnisse einer Microstudie, 18.-19.Jhrhd.)
Ein Konferenzbeitrag der alle zwei Jahre stattfindenden Konferenz der International Association for the Study of the Commons (IASC),

„Although the metaphor of the tragedy of the commons refers to a historic situation and although ’sustainability‘ — as one of the main interests of social scientists — is a concept that necessitates a long-term approach, the non-historical social scientists have only since a number of years shown an increasing interest for the historical dynamics and context in which commons develop(ed) and change(ed). In short: historians and other the other social scientists have clearly been following a different track, and have missed several opportunities to enrich each others work and in particular to learn from each others case studies. In this paper, I want to take a first step towards bringing both parties together, hereby concentrating in the first place on a number of definition questions that currently stand in the way of the mutual exchanges of information. The terminology that is used by the different disciplines was also influenced by their different approaches. Thereafter, I will make the differences clearer by analyzing and structuring the debate. Some of the issues dealt with will be considered by social scientists working on commons as common knowledge. The first two parts are especially meant to broaden the debate to clarify the particular difficulties when studying commons in the historical Europe, to explain the differences in approach between social scientists and historians and to introduce the case study that follows in part three. In that last part of the paper, the applicability of the theoretical analysis will be illustrated with a case study situated in Flanders. With this survey, I hope to enhance the mutual exchange of research results and methods between historiography and other social sciences and to give the debate a more interdisciplinary turn.“