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Geodesign Processes and Ecological Systems Thinking in a Coupled Human-Environment Context: An Integrated Framework for Landscape Architecture

Yexuan Gu (), Brian Deal () and Linda Larsen ()
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Yexuan Gu: Department of Landscape Architecture, University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign, Champaign, IL 61820, USA
Brian Deal: Department of Landscape Architecture, University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign, Champaign, IL 61820, USA
Linda Larsen: Smart Energy Design Assistance Center, University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign, Champaign, IL 61820, USA

Sustainability, 2018, vol. 10, issue 9, 1-24

Abstract: Scholars from a variety of disciplines have been working to unravel the complexities of geodesign as an approach to tackling a host of problems. We argue that a mature understanding of geodesign requires a systemic perspective to organize the interconnections between ecological, social and economic conditions at multiple spatial and temporal scales. We reviewed definitions and perspectives of geodesign and key concepts of ecological systems thinking to develop a new framework for landscape architecture. We provide the state-of-the-art in geodesign within the context of systems thinking and coupled human-environmental resilience. We show that geodesign is capable to encourage public participation and interdisciplinary collaboration through its systemic planning processes and synergetic technologies. The thrust of geodesign-related research is the emerging paradigm of landscape-based sustainability. While landscape architecture is complex in many aspects, the integrated framework promotes our understanding about its social-ecological potential, spatial-temporal association and resilience of coupled human-environment systems. Based on the findings, we outline key contributions, implications, challenges and recommendations for future research.

Keywords: sustainable design; geodesign; systems thinking; social-ecological processes; spatial-temporal patterns; human-environment systems; landscape-based sustainability (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: Q Q0 Q2 Q3 Q5 Q56 O13 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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