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Working Group 'Historical Landscape Ecology'

Landscapes and ecosystems evolve over time, shaped by natural and anthropogenic factors. Understanding ecosystem and landscape development therefore requires insights into their trajectories, but also into the factors and forces driving these trajectories. In recent years, landscape ecologists increasingly acknowledge or even include this historical dimension in the analysis of landscapes and ecosystems.

The topic Historical Landscape Ecology has been repeatedly present at IALE conferences. Specifically, David Mladenoff and Janine Rhemtulla organized a session at the IALE US meeting 2007 in San Diego on “Why history matters in landscape ecology?”. A session organized by David Mladenoff, Lars Östlund and Matthias Bürgi at the 2015 IALE World Congress in Portland, OR, was entitled “Beyond general legacies in Historical Ecology: Quantifying Past Human Use and Disturbance Effects to Understand Current Landscapes”. Both events were very well attended.

The objective of the new IALE working group “Historical Landscape Ecology” is to provide a forum for continuous debate and exchange on historical landscape ecology concerning emerging challenges, topical issues as well as the further development of theory and methods. To achieve its objective, the working group undertakes the following activities:

  • Setting up an e-mailing list for communication where we discuss and highlight new and interesting studies in HE and where we include PhD-students etc.
  • Organizing symposia at the IALE-meetings where we look backwards and forward on what we have achieved and what we want to explore in the future. Let this series become a time-line of HLE in landscape ecology. Broaden this discussion and reach out to scientists within and also outside the landscape ecology community.
  • Arranging small workshop on selected topics in HLE, depending on funding. 
  • Engaging in joint publications 


All interested colleagues are warmly invited to participate in this working group – please contact Matthias Bürgi.

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IALE-Europe Ph.D. course Landscape Ecology: From pattern and process to people and action

IALE-Europe and Ghent University are pleased to announce the Ph.D. Course...

IALE 2017 European Congress

Ghent, 12-15 September 2017

New IALE Bulletin out now!

Volume 34 no. 4, December 2016