Museums and local development: connecting nature and culture at the Pile Dwelling Museum of Ledro and its connected networks

Published: 06 October 2020
Last edited: 09 March 2021
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The solution looks at the long-standing experience of the Pile Dwelling Museum of Ledro and its work in establishing virtuous networks of museums, private and public stakeholders, and communities. The museum is in charge of promoting and interpreting the pile dwelling site of Lake Ledro, part of the 111 sites of the World Heritage site of the Prehistoric Pile Dwellings around the Alps.

The museum has an increasingly important role in the life of the Ledro Valley and its communities: it became the heart of a valley-wide multidisciplinary museum network which is active in the economic life of the valley, it contributed in raising awareness on the natural and cultural characteristics of the territory, and it contributes to strengthening the network between museums, public administration, private sector (including tourism) and local communities.

The inclusion in the framework of MUSE has offered the museum the chance to enhance its capacities and the presence of the museum in the Valley.


West and South Europe
Scale of implementation
Buildings and facilities
Freshwater ecosystems
Pool, lake, pond
Urban ecosystem and build environment
Wetland (swamp, marsh, peatland)
Local actors
Outreach & communications
Sustainable financing
World Heritage
Lack of access to long-term funding
Lack of technical capacity
Lack of public and decision maker’s awareness
Poor governance and participation
Sustainable development goals
SDG 4 – Quality education
SDG 11 – Sustainable cities and communities
SDG 16 – Peace, justice and strong institutions


Molina di Ledro, Ledro, Trento 38067, Italy


  • Environmental challenges: need to enhance and raise awareness on the local environment and territory of the Ledro Valley.
  • Cultural and social challenges: lack of opportunities for local economic development; lack of knowledge and understanding of local heritage and cultural assets in the Ledro Valley; lack of interpretation and opportunities to get to know local heritage and to participate in its management.
  • Economic challenges: lack of employment in the cultural sector; lack of income opportunities in the area.


The main beneficiaries of this solution are local communities and the wider local society. Additionally other beneficiaries are the public administration and various private actors located in the Ledro Valley.

How do the building blocks interact?

The solution looks at the work done by the Pile Dwelling Museum of Ledro in the development of and participation in active and dynamic networks of museums and institutions that over the years have supported the development of the Ledro Valley and its communities. From the ReLED museum network which has become the beating heart of the cultural and touristic offer of the Ledro Valley, to the connection and participation in the lively regional and global networks of the the MUSE.

The museum plays a central role in building capacities and offering on the field and in class multidisciplinary learning experiences which aim not only at the transmission of knowledge but also at putting children and participants in contact with their surrounding natural and cultural environment and its multiple components and interactions.

The creation of synergies and networks has empowered the museum to become an active member of the Ledro Valley and its communities.


  • Environmental: The museum plays a key role in raising awareness on the local territory and environment, introducing children and youth to the natural and cultural resources of the Ledro Valley and the World Heritage site of the Pile Dwelling of the Alps.
  • Cultural and social: The solution focuses on the work done towards putting the museum at the service of communities and stakeholders; connecting museums with local actors and key stakeholders to develop together means of engagement and shared cultural and natural activities dedicated to children, local communities and visitors. Additionally, it stresses the importance of creating shared networks with similar institution, the private sectors and public administrations.
  • Economic: The museum has a role to play in fostering local economic development and in creating means of local employment and income. The museum played a role in establishing a system of dynamic local development around its activities and services.
  • Institutional: The constant dialogue and communication, together with a system of agreements and MoU with relevant partners and institutions, has allowed the museum to become an active and essential player for the Ledro Valley. Additionally, the local (ReLed) and regional (MUSE) networks play an essential role in shaping the work of the museum at the service of communities and in partnership with relevant actors.

Contributed by

cigihe3780_39078's picture

Donato Riccadonna Museo delle Palafitte del Lago di Ledro, MUSE - The Science Museum of Trento

Other contributors

Museo delle Palafitte del Lago di Ledro
MUSE - the Science Museum of Ledro