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Regional Economics: Theory and Practice
 

The delimitation of geo-ecological regions in Africa as a component of spatial planning for sustainable development

Vol. 13, Iss. 16, APRIL 2015

PDF  Article PDF Version

Available online: 28 April 2015

Subject Heading: ENVIRONMENTAL ECONOMICS

JEL Classification: 

Pages: 34-45

Klimanova O.A. Lomonosov Moscow State University, Moscow, Russian Federation
oxkl@yandex.ru

Importance In the context of global environmental changes, the elaboration of regional sustainable development strategies depends on many socio-economic, natural, and historical and cultural factors. Their combined effect often leads to the formation of a wide range of environmental problems from the aspect of size and localization of the territories of administrative territorial entities or natural areas. This is especially true for Africa, the political map of which was formed as a result of artificial cutting of State boundaries during the colonial history and subsequent process of decolonization. The author proposes the allocation of geo-ecological regions, i.e. the cross-country areas of environmental problems and quality management of the natural environment, as one of the components of analysis of the environmental situation in African countries and the development of measures for its improvement.
     Objectives
The aim of the research is to analyze the factors generating the geo-ecological areas in Africa for the spatial planning of sustainable development.
     Methods Using the concept of geo-ecological studies, the author analyzed the various factors of formation of geo-ecological regions in Africa, identified types of such regions, assessed the degree of transformation of their natural environment, and identified major constraints of ecological development.
     Results The author designed and, for the first time for Africa, implemented an integrated multi-criterion methodology for geo-ecological regions, based on a combination of the classical analysis of zoning and environmental by-country development indicators.
     Conclusions and Relevance The author concluded that in terms of natural, ethnic and economic diversity, the geo-ecological regions with various region-forming leading factors demonstrate three environmental development trajectories associated with the transformation of the territory at the agricultural impacts and changes in population density.

Keywords: sustainable development, environmental problems, region, factors, regionalization, Africa

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