Land system science axiomatically addresses social-environmental systems by integrating the dynamics of land uses (social) and land covers (environment), invariably including the use of remote sensing data and often, spatially explicit models of land change. This kind of research is illustrated through the Southern Yucatán Peninsular Region project (1997-2008) aimed at understanding, predicting, and projecting spatially explicit land change in a region with juxtaposed land uses-agriculture and a biosphere reserve. The successes of the project, its contributions to contemporary land system science, and the organizational mechanisms that fostered the research are identified as well as various corrections, which if applied, may have refined and extended the project's goals. Overall, the project demonstrates the kind of integrated research required to advance understanding of a social-environment system and the team-based methods used in the process.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
Multiple programs and agencies provided funding for various parts of the SYPR project, all of to whom we are grateful for their support. The initial and base funding for project, however, was provided by the Land-Use and Land-Cover Change , NASA ( NAG 564006 , NAG5-11134 , NAG-06GD98G ), Center for Integrated Studies, Carnegie Mellon University ( NSF-SBR 95-21914 ), and NSF BCS-0410016 . We also thank our Mexican partners, El Colegio de la Frontera Sur (ECOSUR), for their strong support, especially that of Dr. Pedro Antonio Macario Mendoza who transitioned the precursor research effort into the full-blown SYPR project. Barbara Trapido-Lurie prepared our graphics.
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