Earth construction in the Weinviertel
earth construction, Weinviertel, culture
The project overview
In many regions, earth played an important role as construction material over centuries and therefore, was an important economic and societal driver. From a cultural perspective, specific earth construction techniques led to unique architecture and infrastructure, which influenced the landscape utilisation and subsequently the societal identity.
Today, many earth construction sites and earth pits are abandoned, but earth as a “new” material for ecological and regional building is becoming more and more popular. Identifying, classifying and analysing these old sites and structures promotes the understanding of a regional cultural and landscape emergence and can support the development of new technologies linked to traditional applications.
As gathering data on this topic needs local and historical knowledge the scientists apply a citizen science approach based on the tools and methods developed together with school students. Together with geologists, jurists, earth construction experts and the Museumsdorf Niedersulz, the legal and contextual framework will be developed to implement a citizen science project on earth monitoring and analysing. The participating schools support the project with their work in the main project and help to develop and test the earth application and the methodological framework.
How to participate?
To contribute data of specific earth construction sites, a mobile app on a smartphone or a computer with internet connection can be used. Citizen scientists can document the sites with images and can describe them using a short online survey.
What happens to the contributions of citizen scientists?
Citizen scientists contribute with their local and/or historical knowledge to identify and describe old earth construction sites. These contributions will be published as a WebGIS Service on a website and will be enhanced with further analysis and visualisations. This leads to an application that allows people to explore these sites virtually and animates them to visit and experience these cultural markers and landscapes. The web platform can also be used as an educational tool (e.g. for schools, excursions, workshops).
Participating and supporting institutions
- University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna (project leader)
- Museumsdorf Niedersulz (project partner)
- University College for Teacher Education of Christian Churches (project school)
- HAK/HAS Laa an der Thaya (project partner school)
- HTL Donaustadt (project partner school)
- Austrian Federal Ministry of Education, Science and Research (project funding)
DI Dr Thomas Schauppenlehner
Project website: http://lehmbau.boku.ac.at/