Spatially explicit landscape modelling: current practices and challenges

Abstract : In the past 30 years, the notion of landscape has emerged in ecology as a result of both theoretical strategies and practical aspects of land use. This has generated a variety of computerized models addressing both objectives and techniques. Scientists model landscapes for at least two reasons: to better understand the landscape dynamics themselves (called intrinsic needs) and to offer a realistic and to offer a realistic frame to support other ecological processes (extrinsic needs). This special issue concerns both needs and illustrates the way socioeconomic and/or ecological mechanisms of various landscapes have been understood through modelling approaches. It outlines the links between landscape and model concepts, focusing on one hand on several landscape types (agricultural, forested and aquatic) and on the other hand on several landscape model characteristics (explicit or neutral, dynamic or static, patchy or continuous and multi- or mono-scale). The patterns and processes of each landscape model presented in this issue, in particular, should be analysed in order to highlight the way they are contributing to the landscape ecology discipline. We finally argue that the discipline can now offer a theoretical dimension to landscape dynamics, aiming at understanding the possible mechanism unity underlying this complex object.
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Cédric Gaucherel, Thomas Houet. Spatially explicit landscape modelling: current practices and challenges. Ecological Modelling, Elsevier, 2009, 220 (24), pp.3477-3480. ⟨hal-01195819⟩

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