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Title: The dynamics of socio-ecological systems in human-dominated landscapes : critical changes and continuing challenges in the Amazon estuary
Author: de Araujo Barbosa, Caio Cesar
ISNI:       0000 0004 6422 2649
Awarding Body: University of Southampton
Current Institution: University of Southampton
Date of Award: 2016
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In this thesis I investigate the complex relationships between society, economy and nature taking place in the Amazon estuary, Northern Brazil. Throughout this work I use remote sensing data and techniques combined within the ecosystem services framework. Chapter 2 identifies the broad research gap concerning the effective assimilation of remote sensing into ecosystem services research. It provides a summary of what has been done, what can be done and what can be improved upon in the future to integrate remote sensing into ecosystem services research, laying out the main problems that are developed in the following chapters using the Amazon estuary as a case study. In chapter 3 I analyse the recent and increasing observed trends in forest cover change and ecosystem services as consequence of the interactions between political, economic and social factors. Through a cross-methodological approach, this section of the thesis exposes the political frontiers of forest cover change in the estuary and explores the spatially-explicit relationships linking the Green Vegetation Cover (GVC) to the availability of ecosystem services provided by forests. Such complex relationships are then captured by using an innovative approach used in economics to capturing the relationships between time-delayed variables. Chapter 4 presents the analysis of several time series in order to compare the case of the Amazon estuary to other similar relevant cases elsewhere in the world, providing important insight into the dynamics of social-ecological systems. This chapter, summarises and explore the state of slow and fast variables, observed drivers of change and recent trends in the Amazon, Mekong and Ganges Brahmaputra-Meghna deltas. The results show that there are various fundamental changes in many key ecosystem services, pointing to a changing dynamic state and increased probability of systemic threshold transformations in the near future. In chapter 5 I integrate a large and comprehensive set of social and economic context variables, aimed at understanding land use/cover transition processes in the Amazon estuary over the last three decades and how these might influence the estuarys landscape in the future. In this chapter I develop and apply an integrated modelling approach to capture intricate dynamics in the estuary. The results show that the modelling approach was able to identify and capture specific regional land/use cover dynamics in estuary, simulating the dynamic competition amongst different land use types under different scenarios.
Supervisor: Atkinson, Peter ; Dearing, John Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available