1. Prešov - urban landscape
Spatial development of the town of Prešov has been unusually diverse and complicated. It has been influenced by geographical, economic, cultural and historical circumstances on the basis of which we can identify several settlement phases. In our work we will briefly become familiar with pre-town phase of town development, middle-age phase and capitalistic era of growth. Special attention will be paid to the period of socialism and to the period after the Velvet Revolution in 1989 and subsequent transformation of post-socialistic Prešov. Chosen transformation processes (suburbanization, revitalization, and commercialization) will be compared and analyzed in relation to their development in towns and cities of Western Europe.
Historical development of periods before the era of socialism will be explored through the excursions and lectures in Dubník opal mine, Solivar salt mine and historical centre of Prešov; periods of socialism and transformation will be scrutinised through excursions to particular neighbourhoods and study of literature. To complete the picture of localization and image of the town and its surroundings, we will visit selected panoramatic viewpoints: Šariš Castle, Calvary and a church tower of Con-cathedral of St. Nicolas located downtown.
2. Karst landscape with an emphasis on the Eastern Slovakia
The aim of our work is a complex analysis of karst landscape in the region of Galmus mountain group. Karst geomorphological forms are, as it comes to their attractivness, very remarkable ones. To a common tourist, the term karst usually evokes an image of caves - typical forms of endokarst. But these are not the only forms occuring in Galmus. Generally, sinkholes, wide-spread form of exokarst, can be found on the karst plateaus of Galmus in large measure.
In our field research we will use GPS to map the occurrence of individual karst forms, using 1:10 000 topographic maps. Consequently, the research will be aimed at identification of the types of sinkholes, correlation of height levels of individual cave systems as well as sampling of the cave sediments that will be used to define the composition of the environment in which they were created as well as factors which influenced their genesis.
3. Changes of landscape caused by mining activities and environmental loads in the Spis region
The aim of our work is a complex characteristics of the Spiš region (Slovinky, Rudňany, Krompachy and Poráč), which is a typical example of the landscape changed by the mining processes. It is de facto mining that caused various environmental loads in the region.
In our research we will mainly analyse mining forms of the land relief, such as settling pits, spoil banks, pings and incrush areas of Baniská. We will collect samples from settling pits, spoil banks and ground waters. Using GPS devices, we will measure parameters and bulk of spoil banks. Through sample analysis, we will acquire information about the composition of soils and waters of the research area. Acquired parameters of spoil banks will be drawn into topographic maps using GPS coordinates. We will explore abandoned mine corridors and tunnels and visit the last functioning mine of this region in Poráč. We will do the survey and interview local residents to get their opinion on the issue and will find out about their life under conditions influenced by mining processes as well as their perception of mining loads. Homeless people living in abandoned mine shafts will be included in the survey as well.
4. Cultural landscape in the flysch zone of North-East Slovakia
Man by his activity in particular time and space has been re-creating original natural landscape and constantly turning it into the cultural one.
Main aim of this research topic is a current cultural landscape and its changes in the flysch belt of North-Eastern Slovakia as well as fragments of natural landscape in this region, using an example of the easternmost protected area – Poloniny National Park.
The cultural landscape and its changes in the research area will be scrutinized through an analysis of the social-economic changes in the Slovak frontier regions with an example of the village of Osadné, and through an analysis of developmental potential of a part of the Carpathian Wooden Road – wooden churches in the districts of Svidník, Medzilaborce and Snina, as significant objects of sacral folk architecture which create some kind of harmony between natural and cultural landscape of the region.
5. Eastern Slovak Lowland and its economical utilisation
Eastern Slovak Lowland is a wide-spread flat area with a distinctive landscape. It belongs to the most fertile regions of Slovakia. The aim of our work will be a description of this region. We will explore its physical geographical and human geographical characteristics. The main research will be done in Tokaj Viticulture Region: comparison of Slovak and Hungarian part, deeper insight into winemaking and specific characteristics and conditions under which the wine is being grown. Attention will be paid also to Slovak-Hungarian relationships in this region. In addition, our research will be aimed at Latorica Protected Landscape Area, where scarce natural alluvial plains and mires occur.
The research will be executed through survey amongst wine producers in individual viticulture villages. Main aim of the survey will be a complex overview on the life of local residents, how the conditions of physical and human geography of the region influence them, how they perceive Slovak-Hungarian argument about an export of Tokaj wine and how they perceive frontier location of their region.