Land Change Science

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

8 Scopus citations


Spawned by global environmental change and sustainability concerns, land change science constitutes a science-based approach toward the understanding of land dynamics as a coupled human-environment system. It documents and monitors land-use and land-cover changes worldwide and seeks to understand the causes and consequences of these changes for humankind and the Earth system. Major advances in satellite detection provide global to local information on changes in a large range of land covers. This information is integrated with ground-based data to address the human and biophysical causes of land change, with special attention given to the causes of land change by the spatial scale of analysis employed and the type of land-cover change in question. The consequences of these changes on the function of ecosystems and the Earth system are identified and explained. The feedbacks on land uses and related facets of society are made primarily through changes in ecosystem services. The understanding gained is directed to such concerns as sustainable land systems, vulnerable peoples, and ecosystems, and other concerns that require integrated, coupled system analysis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationInternational Encyclopedia of Human Geography
PublisherElsevier Inc.
Number of pages5
ISBN (Electronic)9780080449104
ISBN (Print)9780080449111
StatePublished - Jan 1 2009


  • Cultural and political ecology
  • Earth system
  • Ecosystem
  • GISc
  • Human-environment relationships
  • Land cover
  • Land use
  • Modeling
  • Remote sensing
  • Sustainability
  • Vulnerability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences(all)


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