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An integrated socioecological approach to land-use intensity: Analyzing and mapping biophysical stocks/flows and their socioeconomic drivers (LUISE)
Date du début: 1 oct. 2010, Date de fin: 30 juin 2016 PROJET  TERMINÉ 

"Land-use intensity is an essential aspect of the human use of terrestrial ecosystems. In the course of history, intensification of land use allowed to overcome Malthusian traps and supported population growth and im-proved diets. It can be anticipated that intensification will become even more decisive in the future, in the light of a growing world population, surges in biofuel consumption, and the simultaneous mandate to protect the world’s forests. Despite its importance, there is a lack of comprehensive, consistent, systematic, and spa-tially explicit metrics of land-use intensity. In consequence, the causal understanding of the factors, mecha-nisms, determinants and constraints underlying land intensification is unsatisfactory. This is due to the main-stream in land use research that predominantly operates with nominal scales, subdividing the Earth’s surface into discrete land cover units. This hampers the analysis of gradual changes, in particular those which are not related to changes in land cover. Intensification leads exactly to such changes. The overall goal of LUISE is the conceptualization and quantification of land use intensity and to contribute to an improved causal under-standing of land intensification. By applying and significantly extending existing methods of the material and energy flow analysis framework (MEFA), the full cycle of land intensification will be studied: Socioeco-nomic inputs to ecosystems, structural changes within ecosystems, changes in outputs of ecosystems to soci-ety, and the underlying socioeconomic constraints, feedbacks, and thresholds, from top-down macro perspec-tives as well as applying bottom-up approaches. The anticipated new empirical results and insights can allow further conceptualizations and quantifications of land modifications (land change without land cover change), and improve the understanding of the dynamic and complex interplay of society and nature that shapes spatial patterns as well as changes of land systems over time."