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Change and Adaptation in Socio-Ecological Systems

Climate Change, Social Changes, Technological Development

Ed. by Inostroza, Luis / Fürst, Christine

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Mapping landscape units in Galicia (Spain): A first step for assessment and management?

Eduardo Corbelle-Rico
  • Corresponding author
  • Land Laboratory, Department of Agricultural and Forest Engineering. Universidade de Santiago de Compostela. Benigno Ledo s/n, 27002 Lugo, Spain
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  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
/ José María Tubío Sánchez
  • Land Laboratory, Department of Agricultural and Forest Engineering. Universidade de Santiago de Compostela. Benigno Ledo s/n, 27002 Lugo, Spain
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
Published Online: 2017-12-29 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/cass-2017-0008


In the beginning of 2015, the Regional Administration of Galicia (NW Spain) set the requirements for a map of landscape units: it had to be produced in less than 3 months, it should cover the whole territory of the region (29,574 km²), and it should be useful for management at a scale of 1:25,000. With these objectives in mind, we pro- posed a semiautomatic mapping methodology entirely based on the use of free software (GRASS GIS) and already available cartographic information. Semi-automatic classification of different land-use patterns was at the heart of the proposed process. Consultation with experts of different academic background took place along the project. This consultation process allowed to identify both problems and opportunities. As it could be expected, the diverse epistemic community represented by the expert panel implied that one of the main challenges was to reach consensus on the understanding of the concept of landscape and the decisions leading to the mapping methodology proposed in this paper. This initiated a very interesting debate that, in our view, was centred around three main issues: the approach to the landscape, the purpose of the mapping exercise, and the ability to include subjectivity into the analysis.

Keywords: landscape units; landscape mapping; geographic information systems; semi-automatic classification; epistemic community


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About the article

Received: 2016-11-25

Accepted: 2017-09-05

Published Online: 2017-12-29

Published in Print: 2017-12-20

Citation Information: Change and Adaptation in Socio-Ecological Systems, Volume 3, Issue 1, Pages 93–102, ISSN (Online) 2300-3669, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/cass-2017-0008.

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