JIMÉNEZ Yohana Gisell
congresos y reuniones científicas
Land System Science in Latin America: emergent land-use trends in the 21st Century
Congreso; Sustainability Research & Innovation Congress; 2023
Land systems are terrestrial social-ecological systems where human and environmental systems interact through land use, and are the focus of the interdisciplinary field of Land System Science (LSS), which has developed over the past 25 years (Meyfroidt et al., 2022: Verburgh et al., 2015). LSS is rooted in the Global North, but the Global South and particularly the tropics are undergoing major land changes (Song et al., 2018). Latin America harbors one fifth of the world’s forests, the greatest terrestrial biological diversity, the largest watersheds, important areas for carbon sequestration, climate regulation, and long-settled indigenous and local communities. Agriculture is expanding rapidly, and livestock ranching occupies a large share of the landscape. At the same time, the region exhibits the highest urbanization rates, with rural population declining from 50% to 25% of total population between 1960 and 2000 (Boillat et al.,2017). Yet, comprehensive, simultaneous analysis of land use trends in Latin America, and their potential consequences on social-ecological systems of the region are lacking. With increasing data availability, new opportunities for large-scale and synthesis research arise, such as the recent effort to operationalize Social-ecological Land Systems of South America with a precise and systematic spatial classification (Zarbá et al., 2022). This session will seek to fill this knowledge gap in the LSS by gathering researchers working on the major land-uses (in terms of area change and/or impact) in Latin America: commodity-driven agriculture, smallholder agriculture and livelihoods, plantation forestry, livestock ranching, cities and infrastructure, to share and discuss the recent trends. Afterwards, an open dialogue with the session participants to reflect on the potential synergies and feedbacks among all the processes presented. The workshop invites participants to commence a participative exercise of exchange of ideas. These discussions will lead the way towards the development of a peer-reviewed article that will contribute to synthesizing trends, dynamics and feedback mechanisms of land-use in Latin America, identifying knowledge gaps, and positioning Land System Science as an important interdisciplinary field in the region.