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    Environmental complaint insights through text mining based on the driver, pressure, state, impact, and response (DPSIR) framework: Evidence from an Italian environmental agency
    Fabiana MANSERVISI, Michele BANZI, Tomaso TONELLI, Paolo VERONESI, Susanna RICCI, Damiano DISTANTE, Stefano FARALLI, Giuseppe BORTONE
    Regional Sustainability    2023, 4 (3): 261-281.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.2023.08.002
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    Individuals, local communities, environmental associations, private organizations, and public representatives and bodies may all be aggrieved by environmental problems concerning poor air quality, illegal waste disposal, water contamination, and general pollution. Environmental complaints represent the expressions of dissatisfaction with these issues. As the time-consuming of managing a large number of complaints, text mining may be useful for automatically extracting information on stakeholder priorities and concerns. The paper used text mining and semantic network analysis to crawl relevant keywords about environmental complaints from two online complaint submission systems: online claim submission system of Regional Agency for Prevention, Environment and Energy (Arpae) (“Contact Arpae”); and Arpae's internal platform for environmental pollution (“Environmental incident reporting portal”) in the Emilia-Romagna Region, Italy. We evaluated the total of 2477 records and classified this information based on the claim topic (air pollution, water pollution, noise pollution, waste, odor, soil, weather-climate, sea-coast, and electromagnetic radiation) and geographical distribution. Then, this paper used natural language processing to extract keywords from the dataset, and classified keywords ranking higher in Term Frequency-Inverse Document Frequency (TF-IDF) based on the driver, pressure, state, impact, and response (DPSIR) framework. This study provided a systemic approach to understanding the interaction between people and environment in different geographical contexts and builds sustainable and healthy communities. The results showed that most complaints are from the public and associated with air pollution and odor. Factories (particularly foundries and ceramic industries) and farms are identified as the drivers of environmental issues. Citizen believed that environmental issues mainly affect human well-being. Moreover, the keywords of “odor”, “report”, “request”, “presence”, “municipality”, and “hours” were the most influential and meaningful concepts, as demonstrated by their high degree and betweenness centrality values. Keywords connecting odor (classified as impacts) and air pollution (classified as state) were the most important (such as “odor-burnt plastic” and “odor-acrid”). Complainants perceived odor annoyance as a primary environmental concern, possibly related to two main drivers: “odor-factory” and “odors-farms”. The proposed approach has several theoretical and practical implications: text mining may quickly and efficiently address citizen needs, providing the basis toward automating (even partially) the complaint process; and the DPSIR framework might support the planning and organization of information and the identification of stakeholder concerns and priorities, as well as metrics and indicators for their assessment. Therefore, integration of the DPSIR framework with the text mining of environmental complaints might generate a comprehensive environmental knowledge base as a prerequisite for a wider exploitation of analysis to support decision-making processes and environmental management activities.

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    Impact of taxes on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development: Evidence from Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries
    Md. Mominur RAHMAN
    Regional Sustainability    2023, 4 (3): 235-248.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.2023.07.001
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    Multiple ecological and socioeconomic problems have occurred worldwide, raising the awareness of sustainability. This study aims to examine the impact of taxes on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in the context of Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries. This research used effective average tax (EAT), tax on personal income (TPI), tax on corporate profits (TCP), and tax on goods and services (TGS) as the variables of taxes, and employed secondary data from 38 OECD countries covering 2000-2021. The study also used Breusch-Pagan Lagrange Multiplier (LM), Pesaran Scaled LM, Bias-Corrected Scaled LM, and Pesaran Cross-sectional dependence (CSD) tests to analyze the existence of cross-sectional dependency. Then, we established the stationarity of variables through second-generation panel unit root tests (Cross-sectional Augmented Dickey-Fuller (CADF) and Cross-sectional Im, Pesaran, and Shin (CIPS)), and confirmed the long-run cointegration of the variables by using second-generation panel cointegration test (Westerlund cointegration test). The results showed that EAT, TPI, TCP, and TGS are positively associated with SDGs. However, the change in TPI has a smaller effect on SDGs than the change in EAT or TCP or TGS. The result of panel causality indicated that EAT, TPI, and TGS have a unidirectional causal relationship with SDGs. The study also found that TCP has a bi-directional causal relationship with SDGs. Moreover, the finding indicated that the OECD countries need to focus on tax policies to achieve the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. This study is based on the theory of optimal taxation (TOT), which suggests that tax systems should be designed to maximize social welfare. Finally, we suggests the importance of taking a comprehensive approach for the managers and policy-makers when analyzing the impact of taxes on SDGs.

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    Measuring the agricultural sustainability of India: An application of Pressure-State-Response (PSR) model
    Surendra Singh JATAV, Kalu NAIK
    Regional Sustainability    2023, 4 (3): 218-234.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.2023.05.006
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    Analyzing agricultural sustainability is essential for designing and assessing rural development initiatives. However, accurately measuring agricultural sustainability is complicated since it involves so many different factors. This study provides a new suite of quantitative indicators for assessing agricultural sustainability at regional and district levels, involving environmental sustainability, social security, and economic security. Combining the Pressure-State-Response (PSR) model and indicator approach, this study creates a composite agricultural sustainability index for the 14 mainstream agro-climatic regions of India. The results of this study show that the Trans-Gengatic Plain Region (TGPR) ranks first in agricultural sustainability among India's 14 mainstream agro-climatic regions, while the Eastern Himalayan Region (EHR) ranks last. Higher livestock ownership, cropping intensity, per capita income, irrigation intensity, share of institutional credit, food grain productivity, crop diversification, awareness of minimum support price, knowledge sharing with fellow farmers, and young and working population, as well as better transportation facilities and membership of agricultural credit societies are influencing indicators responsible for higher agricultural sustainability in TGPR compared with EHR. Although, the scores of environmental sustainability indicators of EHR are quite good, its scores of social and economic security indicators are fairly low, putting it at the bottom of the rank of agricultural sustainability index among the 14 mainstream agro-climatic regions in India. This demonstrates the need of understanding agricultural sustainability in relation to social and economic dimensions. In a nation as diverse and complicated as India, it is the social structure that determines the health of the economy and environment. Last but not least, the sustainability assessment methodology may be used in a variety of India's agro-climatic regions.

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    Urban flood risk assessment under rapid urbanization in Zhengzhou City, China
    LI Guoyi, LIU Jiahong, SHAO Weiwei
    Regional Sustainability    2023, 4 (3): 332-348.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.2023.08.004
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    With accelerated urbanization and climate change, urban flooding is becoming more and more serious. Flood risk assessment is an important task for flood management, so it is crucial to map the spatial and temporal distribution of flood risk. This paper proposed an urban flood risk assessment method that takes into account the influences of hazard, vulnerability, and exposure, by constructing a multi-index urban flood risk assessment framework based on Geographic Information System (GIS). To determine the weight values of urban flood risk index factors, we used the analytic hierarchy process (AHP). Also, we plotted the temporal and spatial distribution maps of flood risk in Zhengzhou City in 2000, 2005, 2010, 2015, and 2020. The analysis results showed that, the proportion of very high and high flood risk zone in Zhengzhou City was 1.362%, 5.270%, 4.936%, 12.151%, and 24.236% in 2000, 2005, 2010, 2015, and 2020, respectively. It is observed that the area of high flood risk zones in Zhengzhou City showed a trend of increasing and expanding, of which Dengfeng City, Xinzheng City, Xinmi City, and Zhongmu County had the fastest growth rate and the most obvious increase. The flood risk of Zhengzhou City has been expanding with the development of urbanization. The method is adapted to Zhengzhou City and will have good adaptability in other research areas, and its risk assessment results can provide a scientific reference for urban flood management personnel. In the future, the accuracy of flood risk assessment can be further improved by promoting the accuracy of basic data and reasonably determining the weight values of index factors. The risk zoning map can better reflect the risk distribution and provide a scientific basis for early warning of flood prevention and drainage.

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    Erratum regarding previously published articles
    Regional Sustainability    2023, 4 (3): 215-217.   DOI: 10.1016/j.rejsus.2023.06.001
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    Expert elicitations of smallholder agroforestry practices in Seychelles: A SWOT-AHP analysis
    Daniel ETONGO, Uvicka BRISTOL, Terence Epule EPULE, Ajith BANDARA, Sandra SINON
    Regional Sustainability    2023, 4 (3): 282-295.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.2023.08.006
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    Agroforestry can leverage the co-benefits of climate change adaptation and mitigation while conserving biodiversity and restoring degraded and deforested lands. The preference of relevant stakeholders regarding agroforestry practices enhances sustainable land management through strategic decision-making in Seychelles and other island states. A suitable approach for assessing stakeholders’ preferences of agroforestry is the implementation of the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats (SWOT) approach in combination with the analytic hierarchy process (AHP) method. The entry point of this study is an extensive literature review process, during which 28 SWOT factors were identified. These SWOT factors were deliberated on during a half-day workshop with agricultural experts who agreed on 20 SWOT factors that reflect the local realities of the Seychelles through a consensus approach. Using the SWOT-AHP approach, focus group discussions were conducted to examine the perceptions of researchers and extension workers about the adoption of agroforestry in Seychelles. The results indicated that the positive aspects of smallholder agroforestry outweigh the negative aspects. For example, increased agricultural production, control runoff and soil erosion receive the highest scores among the strength factors perceived by researchers and extension workers, respectively. The willingness of international organizations to fund agroforestry-related projects and the existence of native tree species on farmlands have the highest scores among the opportunity factors. The lack of education, information, and communication between the government and farmers, and the small land size and crop competition have the highest scores among the weakness factors. Lastly, change in government policies on land use has the highest score among the threat factors by researchers, whereas the most significant threat is climate change and variability for the extension workers. The provision for a 30-year land lease agreement in the National Agroforestry Policy of Seychelles is viewed by both groups as an incentive that could potentially drive the adoption and acceptability of agroforestry. Furthermore, better coordination of various efforts to promote agroforestry and more substantial extension services for farmers, especially the role of technologies for optimal production on small plots of land, can enhance climate resilience in Seychelles and other small island developing states.

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    How Himalayan communities are changing cultivation practices in the context of climate change
    SUBEDI Ashma, RAUT Nani, GURUNG Smriti
    Regional Sustainability    2023, 4 (4): 378-389.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.2023.11.001
    Abstract48)   HTML3)    PDF(pc) (643KB)(15)       Save

    Climate change can have significant impacts on crop yields and food security. This study assessed the linkages between climate change and crop yields to obtain a better understanding on the drivers of food security. The study was conducted in Pasagaun village of Lamjung District in Nepal, where household surveys and focus group discussions (FGDs) were used to collect data including crop cultivation, irrigation facilities, and adaptation strategies. Moreover, climate data (temperature and precipitation) from 1992 to 2020 were collected from the Khudi Bazar meteorological station and crop yield data were obtained from the Agri-Business Promotion and Statistics Division. Trend analysis of temperature and precipitation was conducted using Mann-Kendall trend test and Sen’s slope method, and the results showed an increase in the average temperature of approximately 0.02°C/a and a decrease in the annual precipitation of 9.84 mm/a. The cultivation of traditional varieties of rice and foxtail millet (Kaguno) has vanished. Although, there was no significant impact of the maximum temperature on the yield of rice and maize, the regression analysis revealed that there are negative relationships between rice yield and annual minimum temperature (r= -0.44), between millet yield and annual precipitation (r= -0.30), and between maize yield and annual minimum temperature (r= -0.31), as well as positive relationship between rice yield and annual precipitation (r=0.16). Moreover, average rice yield and millet yield have decreased by 27.0% and 57.0% in 2000-2020, respectively. Despite other reasons for the decrease in crop yield such as the lack of irrigation facilities, out-migration of farmer, and increased pest infestation, respondents have adopted adaptation strategies (for example, shifts in cultivation time and changes in crop types) to minimize the impacts of climate change. More investigation and community-based farming education are needed to understand and alleviate the harmful impacts of climate change on crop yield, as effective adaptation coping strategies are still insufficient. This study provides insights into the adaptation strategies that are necessary to keep food security in the face of climate change.

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    Geotechnical and GIS-based environmental factors and vulnerability studies of the Okemesi landslide, Nigeria
    Oluwakemi Bolanle AKINTAN, Johnson Adedeji OLUSOLA, Olaniyi Patrick IMOLE, Moyosoluwa Odunayo ADEYEMI
    Regional Sustainability    2023, 4 (3): 249-260.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.08.001
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    Landslide is a geological hazard typically associated with extreme events such as earthquakes, heavy rainfall, volcanic eruptions, changes in groundwater level, etc. This study was carried out in Okemesi-Ekiti (also known as Okemesi), Southwest Nigeria, with the purpose of using remote sensing and GIS technologies to analyze the environmental factors (grain size, direct shear strength resistance, rainfall data, wet density, surface, and slope) resulting in the occurrence of the Okemesi landslide. The study also aimed to conduct a vulnerability analysis in the study area to identify regions with a probability of landslide occurrence. The grain size analysis of the soil in the Okemesi landslide area showed that slope materials comprised 17.14% gravel, 59.31% sand, and 19.48% fines, thus the soil type could be classified as poorly graded gravely sand with a high possibility of landslide occurrence. The geomorphic characteristics of the study area was characterized by slopes ranging from 0.00° to 49.00°, while most slopes in the area were less than 8.00°. The slope aspect direction was mainly in south (157.51°-202.50°), southwest (202.51°-247.50°), west (247.51°-292.50°), and north (0.00°-22.50° and 337.51°-360.00°). The highlands were primarily bounded by the slope directions of north (0.00°-22.50° and 337.51°-360.00°), northeast (22.51°-67.50°), east (67.51°-112.51°), and southeast (112.51°-157.50°), which indicated the potential direction of mass movement. The study area can be divided into three vulnerability zones: high, medium, and low, with the area percentages of 9.00%, 61.80%, and 29.20%, respectively. The analysis suggested that the Okemesi landslide was likely triggered by rainfall, which might have weakened the physical structure of slope materials. Understanding the causes and impacts of landslides is crucial for policy-makers to implement measures to mitigate landslide hazards, protect infrastructure, and prevent the loss of life in the landslide-prone regions.

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    Human-wildlife conflict: A bibliometric analysis during 1991-2023
    Qamer RIDWAN, Zishan Ahmad WANI, Nahila ANJUM, Jahangeer Ahmad BHAT, Mohd HANIEF, Shreekar PANT
    Regional Sustainability    2023, 4 (3): 309-321.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.2023.08.008
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    The escalating conflict between human and wildlife due to competing demands for limited space and resources has raised concerns worldwide, and understanding the dynamics of this conflict is crucial for devising effective strategies and policies. The present study is an attempt to carry out a bibliometric analysis of the published literature on the topic of human-wildlife conflict (HWC) for the period of January 1991-February 2023. For carrying out the analysis of the data obtained from Web of Science, the ‘Bibliometrix’ tool, developed through the R programming language, was used. The findings of the study revealed that a total of 1592 documents have been published on the HWC research topic from January 1991 to February 2023 within 338 sources. It is observed that the number of publications has continuously increased since 1991, with an annual growth rate of 5.16%. A total of 4995 authors have contributed to the targeted research field. Of the 388 sources, the journal ‘Biological Conservation’ is the most relevant and productive, followed by ‘Oryx’ and ‘Human Dimensions of Wildlife’. Based on the country production analysis, authors from 110 countries have contributed to the field, and the USA has the highest frequency of publications on HWC, followed by the UK and Australia. The USA also has the highest multiple country publications and has collaborated with 88 countries, with the highest frequency of collaboration with the UK, followed by India, Australia, and South Africa. The most frequently used keywords include ‘human-wildlife conflict’, ‘conservation’, ‘conflict’, ‘human-wildlife’, ‘wildlife’, ‘wildlife management’, ‘livestock’, ‘management’, ‘coexistence’, and ‘carnivore’. The present study identifies the most prolific authors, sources, institutions, and countries, as well as the study hotspots in the subject of HWC, which may assist researchers in finding the best working and publication platforms. Further, it may also help them identify reliable research partners to acquire the best findings and develop more effective strategies and policies to address the issue.

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    Research on the implementation of the Convention on Biological Diversity among the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation countries
    HAO Yun, WU Miao, ZHANG Xiaoyun, WANG Lixian, HE Jingjing
    Regional Sustainability    2023, 4 (3): 322-331.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.2023.08.005
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    The Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) is the most extensive and populous comprehensive regional cooperation organization in the world, covering about half of the world's population, with not only a huge consumer market, but also rich natural resources and strong productivity. As one of the important platforms for the implementation of the Green Belt and Road Initiative, it is an important opportunity for the SCO to actively participate in global governance and contribute to building a community of global life. To investigate the status of biodiversity conservation in the SCO countries, we used literature analysis approach. We surveyed the performance and international cooperation status of the SCO countries in the implementation of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), listed facing problems and threats to biodiversity conservation, including not optimistic biodiversity conservation project implementation status, contradiction between ecological protection and economic development, impacts of human activities, lack of funds and talents, etc., and analyzed the biodiversity protection needs of the SCO countries from the perspectives of project and policy implementation status and international cooperation. According to the cooperation between China and the other SCO countries on biodiversity conservation and the post-2020 global biodiversity framework goals, we gave some recommendations: (1) promoting access to genetic resources and benefit-sharing; (2) integrating multiple funds and innovating the implementation of funding mechanism; (3) developing talent training and exchange programs and deepening multilateral cooperation; (4) strengthening cross-border cooperation and improving cooperation network; and (5) establishing a coordination mechanism for biodiversity conservation within the framework of the SCO.

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    Examination of the poverty-environmental degradation nexus in Sub-Saharan Africa
    Sadat Daaki SSEKIBAALA, Twaha Ahmed KASULE
    Regional Sustainability    2023, 4 (3): 296-308.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.2023.08.007
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    The relationship between environmental degradation and poverty has increasingly become the focus of national strategic decision-making in recent years. However, despite several theoretical explorations on the nexus, a dearth of empirical literature on the poverty-environmental degradation nexus, specifically on Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA), still exists. In this study, we investigated the poverty-environmental degradation nexus in SSA. We hypothesized that poverty is both a cause and effect of environmental degradation, and this relationship is explained as a vicious cycle. Unlike previous studies, we employed several alternative indicators of environmental degradation to examine the poverty-environmental degradation nexus in this study. We used data from 41 countries of SSA between 1996 and 2019 and employed the generalized method of moments (GMM) approach. The findings suggest a cyclical relationship between poverty and environmental degradation in SSA, which confirms that an increase in poverty leads to an increase in environmental degradation, especially in deforestation and PM2.5 emissions. Similarly, the increase in environmental degradation positively affects poverty in SSA. We also confirmed that exogenous conditioning factors such as population growth rate, education, industrialization, and income inequality, institutional quality indicators such as governance effectiveness, control of corruption, freedom ad civil liberty, and democracy, and endogenous factors including fossil fuel energy use, fuelwood energy use, household health expenditure, infant mortality rate, and agriculture productivity influence the nexus between poverty and environmental degradation. The findings on the relationship between poverty and environmental degradation in SSA are a testimonial evidence that both poverty and environmental degradation are significant issues in SSA. Hence, poverty alleviation policies in SSA should not lead to PM2.5 emissions and deforestation, which may as well force people into a poverty-environmental degradation trap. Instead, poverty reduction policies should simultaneously achieve environmental conservation.

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    Assessment of soil erosion in the Irga watershed on the eastern edge of the Chota Nagpur Plateau, India
    Ratan PAL, Buddhadev HEMBRAM, Narayan Chandra JANA
    Regional Sustainability    2024, 5 (1): 100112-.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.2024.03.006
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    Human activities to improve the quality of life have accelerated the natural rate of soil erosion. In turn, these natural disasters have taken a great impact on humans. Human activities, particularly the conversion of vegetated land into agricultural land and built-up area, stand out as primary contributors to soil erosion. The present study investigated the risk of soil erosion in the Irga watershed located on the eastern fringe of the Chota Nagpur Plateau in Jharkhand, India, which is dominated by sandy loam and sandy clay loam soil with low soil organic carbon (SOC) content. The study used the Revised Universal Soil Loss Equation (RUSLE) and Geographical Information System (GIS) technique to determine the rate of soil erosion. The five parameters (rainfall-runoff erosivity (R) factor, soil erodibility (K) factor, slope length and steepness (LS) factor, cover-management (C) factor, and support practice (P) factor) of the RUSLE were applied to present a more accurate distribution characteristic of soil erosion in the Irga watershed. The result shows that the R factor is positively correlated with rainfall and follows the same distribution pattern as the rainfall. The K factor values in the northern part of the study area are relatively low, while they are relatively high in the southern part. The mean value of the LS factor is 2.74, which is low due to the flat terrain of the Irga watershed. There is a negative linear correlation between Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) and the C factor, and the high values of the C factor are observed in places with low NDVI. The mean value of the P factor is 0.210, with a range from 0.000 to 1.000. After calculating all parameters, we obtained the average soil erosion rate of 1.43 t/(hm2•a), with the highest rate reaching as high as 32.71 t/(hm2•a). Therefore, the study area faces a low risk of soil erosion. However, preventative measures are essential to avoid future damage to productive and constructive activities caused by soil erosion. This study also identifies the spatial distribution of soil erosion rate, which will help policy-makers to implement targeted soil erosion control measures.

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    Rural sustainable development: A case study of the Zaozhuang Innovation Demonstration Zone in China
    Binsheng LIU, Xiaohui ZHANG, Junfeng TIAN, Ruimin CAO, Xinzhang SUN, Bin XUE
    Regional Sustainability    2023, 4 (4): 390-404.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.2023.11.004
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    Sustainable development is the central theme of modern global development. With the arrival of the urban era, the vulnerability and instability of rural areas have significantly increased, and rural sustainable development faces serious challenges. To address these issues, the study took the Zaozhuang Innovation Demonstration Zone in China under the National Sustainable Development Agenda as a case, combined with economic, social and land use data during 2016-2020, and applied Granger causality test method to explore the theoretical and practical pathways of “innovation-driven rural sustainable development”. The results showed that rural sustainable development and economic sustainability displayed a trend of synergistic change, with “explosive” growth from 2018 to 2020. The social sustainability steadily increased from 2016 to 2020. Ecological and spatial sustainability continuously declined during the study period. Moreover, the rural innovation capacity of the Zaozhuang Innovation Demonstration Zone displayed rapid growth during 2016-2020. Although the rural innovation capacity of the Zaozhuang Innovation Demonstration Zone has rapidly improved, it has a weak driving effect on rural sustainable development and economic sustainability. There are two primary challenges that must be overcome to ensure the rural sustainable development of the Zaozhuang Innovation Demonstration Zone. The first challenge is the imbalance among the multi-dimensional relationships in the process of rural sustainable development, and the second challenge is the weakening of rural innovation capacity to drive rural sustainable development. To overcome these challenges, this study proposed a systematic pathway for rural sustainable development in the Zaozhuang Innovation Demonstration Zone from multi-dimensions, such as policy actions, technologies, projects, and institutional guarantees, and formed a universal and representative “Zaozhuang model”. This study expands the theoretical foundation of rural sustainable development and provides theoretical and practical support for innovation-driven rural sustainable development.

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    Economic complexity and environmental sustainability in eastern European economies: Evidence from novel Fourier approach
    KIRIKKALELI Dervis, SOFUOĞLU Emrah, Raza ABBASI Kashif, ADDAI Kwaku
    Regional Sustainability    2023, 4 (4): 349-358.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.2023.08.003
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    Globally, economies have become complex and new technologies have transformed and facilitated the modernization of economies. In the previous literature, economic complexity approach has become one of the popular tools in the development and innovation studies of economic geography. Researchers have found that green technology and eco-innovation approaches should be used to decisively reduce the effects of carbon emissions on the environment. However, debates about the impact of economic complexity on environment remain unsettled since some emerging production technologies have far-reaching pollution effects. This study explored the impacts of economic complexity on environmental sustainability in Turkey using the novel Fourier-based approaches, namely: Fourier Augmented Dickey-Fuller (FADF) and Fourier Autoregressive-Distributed Lag (FARDL) models. The Fourier-based approaches indicated that all variables (economic complexity index (ECI), GDP, energy consumption, and CO2 emission (CO2E)) are cointegrated in the long run. Additionally, the FARDL model implied that (i) in the long run, the effect of ECI (as a proxy for economic complexity), GDP (as a proxy for economic growth), and energy consumption on CO2E (as a proxy for environmental quality) are important; (ii) economic complexity decreases environmental degradation in Turkey; and (iii) economic growth and energy consumption negatively affect environmental quality. The results also showed that economic complexity could be used as a policy tool to tackle environmental degradation. The findings also revealed that the fossil fuel-based economy will continue to expand and undermine Turkey’s efforts to meet its net zero emission target by 2053. Therefore, policy-makers should take actions and establish diversified economic, environmental, and energy strategies. For policy insights, the Turkish governments can use the combination of tax exemptions and technical support systems to support knowledge creation and the diffusion of environmentally friendly technologies The governments can also impose strict environmental regulations on the knowledge development phases.

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    Spatial differences of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) among counties (cities) on the northern slope of the Kunlun Mountains
    WANG Tao, ZHOU Daojing, FAN Jie
    Regional Sustainability    2024, 5 (1): 100108-.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.2024.03.002
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    The county (city) located on the northern slope of the Kunlun Mountains is the primary area to solidify and extend the success of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, China in poverty alleviation. Its Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are intertwined with the concerted economic and social development of Xinjiang and the objective of achieving shared prosperity within the region. This study established a sustainable development evaluation framework by selecting 15 SDGs and 20 secondary indicators from the United Nations’ SDGs. The aim of this study is to quantitatively assess the progress of SDGs at the county (city) level on the northern slope of the Kunlun Mountains. The results indicate that there are substantial variations in the scores of SDGs among the nine counties and one city located on the northern slope of the Kunlun Mountains. Notable high scores of SDGs are observed in the central and eastern regions, whereas lower scores are prevalent in the western areas. The scores of SDGs, in descending order, are as follows: 62.22 for Minfeng County, 54.22 for Hotan City, 50.21 for Qiemo County, 42.54 for Moyu County, 41.56 for Ruoqiang County, 41.39 for Qira County, 39.86 for Lop County, 38.25 for Yutian County, 38.10 for Pishan County, and 36.87 for Hotan County. The performances of SDGs reveal that Hotan City, Lop County, Minfeng County, and Ruoqiang County have significant sustainable development capacity because they have three or more SDGs ranked as green color. However, Hotan County, Moyu County, Qira County, and Yutian County show the poorest performance, as they lack SDGs with green color. It is important to establish and enhance mechanisms that can ensure sustained income growth among poverty alleviation beneficiaries, sustained improvement in the capacity of rural governance, and the gradual improvement of social security system. These measures will facilitate the effective implementation of SDGs. Finally, this study offers a valuable support for governmental authorities and relevant departments in their decision-making processes. In addition, these results hold significant reference value for assessing SDGs at the county (city) level, particularly in areas characterized by low levels of economic development.

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    Association between people’s attitudes towards human-elephant conflict and their locational, demographic, and socio-economic characteristics in Buxa Tiger Reserve and its adjoining area, India
    Chiranjib NAD, Tamal BASU-ROY
    Regional Sustainability    2024, 5 (1): 100109-.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.2024.03.003
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    “Human-elephant conflict (HEC)”, the alarming issue, in present day context has attracted the attention of environmentalists and policy makers. The rising conflict between human beings and wild elephants is common in Buxa Tiger Reserve (BTR) and its adjoining area in West Bengal State, India, making the area volatile. People’s attitudes towards elephant conservation activity are very crucial to get rid of HEC, because people’s proximity with wild elephants’ habitat can trigger the occurrence of HEC. The aim of this study is to conduct an in-depth investigation about the association of people’s attitudes towards HEC with their locational, demographic, and socio-economic characteristics in BTR and its adjoining area by using Pearson’s bivariate chi-square test and binary logistic regression analysis. BTR is one of the constituent parts of Eastern Doors Elephant Reserve (EDER). We interviewed 500 respondents to understand their perceptions to HEC and investigated their locational, demographic, and socio-economic characteristics including location of village, gender, age, ethnicity, religion, caste, poverty level, education level, primary occupation, secondary occupation, household type, and source of firewood. The results indicate that respondents who are living in enclave forest villages (EFVs), peripheral forest villages (PFVs), corridor village (CVs), or forest and corridor villages (FCVs), mainly males, at the age of 18-48 years old, engaged with agriculture occupation, and living in kancha and mixed houses, have more likelihood to witness HEC. Besides, respondents who are illiterate or at primary education level are more likely to regard elephant as a main problematic animal around their villages and refuse to participate in elephant conservation activity. For the sake of a sustainable environment for both human beings and wildlife, people’s attitudes towards elephants must be friendly in a more prudent way, so that the two communities can live in harmony.

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    Exploring well-being disparities between urban and rural areas: A case study in the Stavropol Territory, Russia
    Anastasia CHAPLITSKAYA, Wim HEIJMAN, Johan van OPHEM
    Regional Sustainability    2024, 5 (1): 100114-.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.2024.100114
    Abstract35)   HTML5)    PDF(pc) (349KB)(7)       Save

    Rural areas are crucial for a country’s sustainable economy. New strategies are needed to develop rural areas to improve the well-being of rural population and generate new job opportunities. This is especially important in countries where agricultural production accounts for a significant share of the gross product, such as Russia. In this study, we identified the key indicators of satisfaction and differences between rural and urban citizens based on their social, economic, and environmental backgrounds, and determined whether there are well-being disparities between rural and urban areas in the Stavropol Territory, Russia. We collected primary data through a survey based on the European Social Survey framework to investigate the potential differences between rural and urban areas. By computing the regional well-being index using principal component analysis, we found that there was no statistically significant difference in well-being between rural and urban areas. Results of key indicators showed that rural residents felt psychologically more comfortable and safer, assessed their family relationships better, and adhered more to traditions and customs. However, urban residents showed better economic and social conditions (e.g., infrastructures, medical care, education, and Internet access). The results of this study imply that we can better understand the local needs, advantages, and unique qualities, thereby gaining insight into the effectiveness of government programs. Policy-makers and local authorities can consider targeted interventions based on the findings of this study and strive to enhance the well-being of both urban and rural residents.

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    Socio-economic vulnerability level in the Jeneberang watershed in Gowa Regency, South Sulawesi Province, Indonesia
    Andi Rachmat ARFADLY, Hazairin ZUBAIR, MAHYUDDIN , Andang Suryana SOMA
    Regional Sustainability    2024, 5 (1): 100113-.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.2024.03.007
    Abstract34)   HTML3)    PDF(pc) (523KB)(18)       Save

    Jeneberang watershed is vital, particularly for people living in Gowa Regency (South Sulawesi Province, Indonesia), who benefit from its many advantages. Landslides and floods occur every year in the Jeneberang watershed, so it is imperative to understand the socio-economic vulnerability of this region. This research aims to identify the vulnerability level of the Jeneberang watershed so that the government can prioritize areas with high vulnerability level and formulate effective strategies to reduce these the vulnerability. Specifically, this study was conducted in 12 districts located in the Jeneberang watershed. The primary data were collected from questionnaires completed by community members, community leaders, and various stakeholders, and the secondary data were from the Landsat satellite imagery in 2020, the Badan Push Statistic of Gowa Regency, and some governmental agencies. The socio-economic vulnerability variables were determined using the Multiple Criteria Decision Analysis (MCDA) method, and each variable was weighted and analyzed using the Geographical Information System (GIS). The study reveals that the levels of socio-economic vulnerability are affected by variables such as population density, vulnerable groups (disabled people, elderly people, and young people), road network and settlement, percentage of poor people, and productive land area in the Jeneberang watershed. Moreover, all of the 12 districts in the Jeneberang watershed are included in the medium vulnerability level, with the mean percentage of socio-economic vulnerability around 50.92%. The socio-economic vulnerability of Bajeng, Pallangga, and Somba Opu districts is categorized at high level, the socio-economic vulnerability of Bungaya, Parangloe, and Tombolo Pao districts is classified as medium level, and the remaining 6 districts (Barombong, Bontolempangan, Bontomarannu, Manuju, Parigi, and Tinggimoncong) are ranked as low socio-economic vulnerability. This study can help policy-makers to formulate strategy that contributes to the protection of biodiversity and sustainable development of the Jeneberang watershed, while improving disaster resilience and preparedness of the watershed.

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    Social interactions in periodic urban markets and their contributions to sustainable livelihoods: Evidence from Ghana
    ADDAI Godfred, AMPONSAH Owusu, Dogkubong DINYE Romanus
    Regional Sustainability    2023, 4 (4): 369-377.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.2023.10.002
    Abstract34)   HTML2)    PDF(pc) (476KB)(9)       Save

    Periodic markets are an important aspect of local economies, providing a platform for farmers (producers), wholesalers, retailers, and consumers to interact face-to-face and exchange goods and services. These markets have been increasing in urban areas in Africa, Asia, and South America because of urbanization. The increase of periodic urban markets (PUMs) in urban areas is observed as an index of modernization, reflecting a response to transition process. However, there are limited studies on how social interactions in PUMs contribute to sustainable livelihoods. This study investigated the types of social interactions occurring in PUMs in Ghana, the benefits of social interactions for participants of PUMs, and how social interactions contribute to sustainable livelihoods. This research interviewed 162 participants, comprising 27 farmers (farmers were regarded as producers in this study), 61 retailers, 47 wholesalers from 9 selected PUMs across Ghana, and 27 officers from government institutions and non-governmental market associations to obtain their opinions. We analyzed the interview data using the NVivo software. The results showed that there are seven kinds of social interactions in PUMs, including (i) producer-wholesaler relationship, (ii) producer-consumer relationship, (iii) wholesaler-retailer relationship, (iv) retailer-consumer relationship, (v) trader-driver relationship, (vi) trader-institution relationship, and (vii) trader-international buyer relationship. We found that these social interactions in PUMs enhance sustainable livelihoods by supporting human, social, financial, natural, and physical assets of traders (traders refer to producers, wholesalers, and retailers in this study). Therefore, we concluded that the development of policies to improve PUMs could strengthen social interactions, enabling the achievement of sustainable livelihoods in developing countries.

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    Small ruminant value chain in Al-Ruwaished District, Jordan
    AWAD Rula, TITI Hosam, MOHAMED-BRAHMI Aziza, JAOUAD Mohamed, GASMI-BOUBAKER Aziza
    Regional Sustainability    2023, 4 (4): 416-424.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.2023.11.006
    Abstract32)   HTML5)    PDF(pc) (1036KB)(4)       Save

    This study aims to assess the small ruminant value chain in Al-Ruwaished District, Jordan, to identify the potential intervention areas that could improve the production efficiency and guarantee the sustainability of the small ruminant sector in this area. Sheep breeding is the source of livelihood for most of the people in Al-Ruwaished District, which is characterized by the large number of sheep and goats. We surveyed 5.0% of the small ruminant holders in the study area and conducted individual interviews and surveys with the potential actors in the value chain to undertake a small ruminant value chain analysis. From the survey, we found that the small ruminant value chain consists of five core functions, namely, input supply, production management, marketing, processing, and consumption. Despite the stable impression given by the large number of holdings in the small ruminant sector, the surveyed results show a clear fragility in the value chain of small ruminants in this area. The small ruminant production system is negatively impacted by climate change, especially continuous drought. In addition, the high prices of feed that the farmer cannot afford with clear and real absence of the governmental and non-governmental support activities also impact the development of the value chain. The results of strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats (SWOT) analysis reveal that the major constraints faced by this value chain could be divided into external and internal threats. Specifically, the most prominent external threats are the nature of the desert land and continuous drought, while the major internal threats are the absence of appropriate infrastructure, shortage of inputs, and weakness in the production management and marketing. We proposed solutions to these challenges to ensure the sustainability and effectiveness of the sector, such as the formulation of emergency response plans to severe weather, qualifying farmers’ skills, and establishment of agricultural cooperative societies.

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