Research of the Land Use Planning Group

Programme 2014 – 2017

Landscapes are in many cases the precipitation of human efforts to make a living on the biophysical environment. The search for a livelihood involves the cultivation of land for food, the construction of buildings, the transformation of raw materials for production and distribution of goods, and the consumption of services.  The spatial and ecological consequences are, for example, the translocation of nutrients, altered hydrological systems, and the loss of biodiversity. Planning emerges from the aspiration of societies to stimulate the socio-economic performance of landscapes and to prevent and mitigate negative environmental consequences of land use. In addition, planning is meant to increase resilience to natural processes and perturbations such as climate change or earthquakes.

In our view, successful planning needs to consider the following three elements: (i) the structure and dynamics of landscapes and how these develop; (ii) the values associated with landscapes and landscape developments; and (iii) the governance structure for steering landscape developments.

Among its key outputs, the Land Use Planning Group develops new multi-actor landscape planning approaches that are adapted to the emerging new modes of governance of rural and peri-urban landscapes in which values, creativity, and entrepreneurship of local communities are central.

Full text Research Programme 2014-2017

Current research projects