Landscape Character Workshop – ialeUK conference Reading (Sept 2016)

Landscape Character Workshop – ialeUK conference Reading (Sept 2016)

UK landscape ecology: trends and perspectives from the first 25 years of ialeUK

ialeUK recently celebrated its 25 year anniversary and as a consequence the current committee decided to investigate the way in which LE in the UK has evolved over time and the role of ialeUK in its development as a discipline. One of the ways of doing this was to look at the changing themes of the annual conferences and the contributors/contributions to those conferences:  this was therefore looked at and the results recently published in Landscape Ecology (Young, C., Bellamy, C., Burton, V. et al. Landscape Ecol (2019).

Whilst it is something of a ‘chicken and egg’ scenario, i.e. the content reflects the conference theme, the themes themselves emerged in response to changes in landscape ecological priorities within the different LE communities in the UK and hence reflect wider conceptual changes in the subject. Whilst the data set covers lots of potential trends, of significant note in a UK context were the decreasing contribution of UK statutory bodies and the growth in use of qualitative methods.

Elsewhere, a simple questionnaire was used to look more closely at the precise role of ialeUK. From this two factors particularly came across from the responses: bridging the policy/practice gap through the type of audiences that ialeUK attract to their meetings, and the positive encouragement of young researchers to participate at all levels from participation through to organisation.

There are ongoing plans to continue this good work and ialeUK is looking forward to the next 25 years of landscape ecology in the UK.


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