Sustainable development at the landscape or regional level that is what Sustainable Landscapes (SL) research is all about. Aiming for sustainable landscapes requires an inclusive societal process that leads to ecological, economic and socio-cultural sustainability at the landscape scale. Agricultural intensification, industrial progress and urbanization have strong detrimental impacts on the landscapes as coupled social and ecological systems we live in. Maintaining resilient and harmonious landscapes is key to human identity and belonging, to biodiversity and to ecosystem services that support human well-being. Balancing these complex and diverging forces requires strong landscape governance.
The Sustainable Landscapes research group at UG is devoted to developing knowledge for better landscape governance by combining cutting-edge disciplinary and integrative research from widely differing scientific fields. Development towards sustainable landscapes requires evidence-based knowledge regarding landscape governance that acknowledges and understands on the one hand the hard economic values and forces which are essential for progress and on the other the soft vulnerable values and forces so important to higher human well-being needs, including biodiversity. Crucially it also calls for new integrative transdisciplinary methods as a productive focal point of creating and sharing knowledge.
The group is convinced that knowledge production and learning towards sustainable landscape governance goes nowhere without practical knowledge and wisdom. This makes close connections to a wide array of stakeholders an essential ingredient for our success. It calls for new combinations and partnerships of science, entrepreneurs, citizens, NGOs and governments; it calls for building landscape knowledge and understanding in unexplored ways.
Sustainable Landscapes Fellowship
The Sustainable Landscape Research Group of the University of Groningen consists of a group of more than 30 female and male academic fellows and is lead by a core team.
- dr. F.J. (Frans) Sijtsma
- dr. ir. E.W. (Erik) Meijles
- dr. ir. R.H.G. (Raymond) Klaassen
- prof. dr. ir. M. (Theo) Spek
- dr. M. (Mans) Schepers
The Sustainable Landscapes fellows work together by joining in on SL meetings, engaging in multi-disciplinary research proposals, contributing to educational activities of the SL research group and by participating or organizing societal activities with societal partners. Fellows share their latest research that is relevant for SL via the SL website.
Become a Sustainable Landscapes fellow
Interested in becoming a fellow? Send an e-mail to the chair:
dr. F.J. (Frans) Sijtsma
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