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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
    Abstract33)   HTML6)    PDF (724KB)(7)      

    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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    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
    Abstract37)   HTML1)    PDF (560KB)(3)      

    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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    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
    Abstract25)   HTML2)    PDF (581KB)(1)      

    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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    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
    Abstract25)   HTML1)    PDF (6346KB)(1)      

    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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    Socio-economic development of countries based on the Composite Country Development Index (CCDI)
    Kalamkas NURALINA, Raissa BAIZHOLOVA, Natalya ALEKSANDROVA, Viktor KONSTANTINOV, Alexander BIRYUKOV
    Regional Sustainability    2023, 4 (2): 115-128.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.2023.03.005
    Abstract141)   HTML11)    PDF (1469KB)(19)      

    World experience indicates the existence of significant imbalances in the development of countries. The problem of assessing the rational development of the regional and national economy is becoming urgent, since such assessments can prevent development imbalances across countries. The aim of this study is to elaborate a methodology to assess the countries’ socio-economic development by integraring 12 modern indices of socio-economic development into the Composite Country Development Index (CCDI). The methodology of this research was based on a set of key indices that described socio-economic development level in four fields (social development, digital development, economic development, and environmental security) and then these indices were integrated into the CCDI. The study further applied factor analysis and R-Studio software to define the gaps of social and economic development in 59 selected countries using the trigonometric function of the angle sine. The correlation analysis confirmed the existence of a close interrelation among the studied countries. This paper noted that due to the emergence of new priorities, it is necessary to revise the assessment methodology of socio-economic development level and expand them to cover the decisive factors. This was confirmed by the results obtained, demonstrating various combinations of the development level in the four fields and their impact on the CCDI. The scientific contribution of this research is to form a methodology (e.g., the CCDI) for evaluating the socio-economic development level of countries in the world.

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    Impacts of climate change on the yields of leguminous crops in the Guinea Savanna agroecological zone of Ghana
    Enoch YELELIERE, Philip ANTWI-AGYEI, Frank BAFFOUR-ATA
    Regional Sustainability    2023, 4 (2): 139-149.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.2023.04.002
    Abstract96)   HTML5)    PDF (667KB)(7)      

    The impacts of climate change on crop yields are receiving renewed interest, with focus on cereals and staple crops at the regional and national scales. Yet, the impacts of climate change on the yields of leguminous crops in the local context has not been explored. Thus, an in-depth understanding of climate change in the local context may support the design of locally relevant adaptation responses to current and future climate risks. This study examined the impacts of climate variables (annual rainfall, annual average temperature, rainfall indices (rainfall onset, rainfall cessation, and the length of rainy days), and the number of dry days) on the yields of leguminous crops (groundnuts, cowpeas, and soybeans) in the Guinea Savanna agroecological zone of Ghana during the period of 1989-2020. The data were analysed using Mann-Kendall’s trend, Sen’s slope test, correlation analysis, and Multiple Regression Analysis (MRA). The findings revealed that annual rainfall, annual average temperature, rainfall onset, rainfall cessation, and the length of rainy days, and the number of dry days all showed varied impacts on the yields of groundnuts, cowpeas, and soybeans. The trend analysis detected a marginal decrease in the amount of rainfall, rainfall onset, and the number of dry days from 1989 to 2020 (P>0.050). Annual average temperature and the length of rainy days substantially varied (P<0.050) from 1989 to 2020, showing an increasing trend. The findings also showed a marked upward trend for the yields of groundnuts, cowpeas, and soybeans during 2005-2020. The climate variables analysed above increased the yields of groundnuts, cowpeas, and soybeans by 49.0%, 55.0%, and 69.0%, respectively. The yields of groundnuts, cowpeas, and soybeans fluctuated with the variability of 30.0%, 28.0%, and 27.0% from 2005 to 2020, respectively. The three leguminous crops under study demonstrated unpredictable yields due to the variations of annual rainfall, annual average temperature, rainfall onset, rainfall cessation, the length of rainy days, and the number of dry days, which stressed the need for agricultural diversification, changing planting dates, using improved seed variety, and irrigation to respond to climate change. The results of this study implied that climate change considerably impacts crop production in the Guinea Savanna agroecological zone of Ghana, emphasizing the urgency of locally based and farmer-induced adaptation measures for food security and resilient agricultural systems.

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    Dynamicity of Land Use/Land Cover (LULC): An analysis from peri-urban and rural neighbourhoods of Durgapur Municipal Corporation (DMC) in India
    Subrata HALDAR, Somnath MANDAL, Subhasis BHATTACHARYA, Suman PAUL
    Regional Sustainability    2023, 4 (2): 150-172.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.2023.05.001
    Abstract210)   HTML1)    PDF (9791KB)(1)      

    The availability of better economic possibilities and well-connected transportation networks has attracted people to migrate to peri-urban and rural neighbourhoods, changing the landscape of regions outside the city and fostering the growth of physical infrastructure. Using multi-temporal satellite images, the dynamics of Land Use/Land Cover (LULC) changes, the impact of urban growth on LULC changes, and regional environmental implications were investigated in the peri-urban and rural neighbourhoods of Durgapur Municipal Corporation in India. The study used different case studies to highlight the study area’s heterogeneity, as the phenomenon of change is not consistent. Landsat TM and OLI-TIRS satellite images in 1991, 2001, 2011, and 2021 were used to analyse the changes in LULC types. We used the relative deviation (RD), annual change intensity (ACI), uniform intensity (UI) to show the dynamicity of LULC types (agriculture land; built-up land; fallow land; vegetated land; mining area; and water bodies ) during 1991-2021. This study also applied the Decision-Making Trial and Evaluation Laboratory (DEMATEL) to measure environmental sensitivity zones and find out the causes of LULC changes. According to LULC statistics, agriculture land, built-up land, and mining area increased by 51.7, 95.46, and 24.79 km2, respectively, from 1991 to 2021. The results also suggested that built-up land and mining area had the greatest land surface temperature (LST), whereas water bodies and vegetated land showed the lowest LST. Moreover, this study looked at the relationships among LST, spectral indices (Normalized Differenced Built-up Index (NDBI), Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI), and Normalized Difference Water Index (NDWI)), and environmental sensitivity. The results showed that all of the spectral indices have the strongest association with LST, indicating that built-up land had a far stronger influence on the LST. The spectral indices indicated that the decreasing trends of vegetated land and water bodies were 4.26 and 0.43 km2/a, respectively, during 1991-2021. In summary, this study can help the policy-makers to predict the increasing rate of temperature and the causes for the temperature increase with the rapid expansion of built-up land, thus making effective peri-urban planning decisions.

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    Evolution of economic linkage network of the cities and counties on the northern slope of the Tianshan Mountains, China
    YANG Zeyu, ZHANG Shubao, LEI Jun, ZHANG Xiaolei, TONG Yanjun, DUAN Zuliang, FAN Liqin
    Regional Sustainability    2023, 4 (2): 173-184.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.2023.05.002
    Abstract51)   HTML5)    PDF (7311KB)(14)      

    The exchanges between cities and counties in the northern slope economic belt of Tianshan Mountains (NSEBTM) are increasingly frequent and the economic linkages are increasingly close, but the spatial distribution of economic development and linkages among the cities and counties within NSEBTM is uneven. Therefore, it is of great significance to study the evolution of spatial-temporal pattern of the economic linkage network of cities and counties on NSEBTM to promote the coordinated and integrated development of the regional economy on NSEBTM. In this study, we used the modified gravity model and social network analysis method to analyze the spatio-temporal evolution characteristics of the economic linkage network structure of cities and counties on NSEBTM in 2000, 2010, and 2020. The results showed that the comprehensive development quality level of cities and counties on NSEBTM increased from 2000 to 2020, its growth rate also increased, and its gap between cities and counties continued expanding. Both the spatial distribution patterns of the comprehensive development quality level of cities and counties on NSEBTM in 2000 and 2010 were presented as “high in the middle and low at both ends”, while the spatial distribution pattern of 2020 was exhibited as “high value and low value staggered”. The total amount of external economic linkages of cities and counties on NSEBTM showed an obvious upward trend, and its gap between cities and counties continued expanding, presenting a pattern of “a strong middle section and weak ends”. The direction of economic linkages of NSEBTM existed obvious central orientation and geographical proximity. The density of economic linkage network of NSEBTM increased from 2000 to 2020, and the structure of economic linkage network changed from single-core structure centered with Urumqi City to multicore structure centered with Urumqi City, Karamay City, Shihezi City, and Changji City, shifting from unbalanced development to balanced development. In the future, we should accelerate the construction of urban agglomeration on NSEBTM, cultivate a modern Urumqi metropolitan area, improve comprehensive development quality of the cities and counties at the eastern and western ends, strengthen the intensity of economic linkages between cities and counties, optimize the economic linkage network, and promote the coordinated and integrated development of regional economy.

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    Production of Railwayscape in urban environment: Analysing railway heritage tourism potential in Siliguri City, India
    Iman BANERJEE
    Regional Sustainability    2023, 4 (1): 1-12.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.2023.02.001
    Abstract76)   HTML250)    PDF (11028KB)(38)      

    For a long time, it has been argued that the theories and practices devoted to urban planning and management should conform to the fundamental role of planning policies in the production of urban space, but not merely the spatial distribution of the produced services. Towards this wider connotation, this study introduces the notion of Railwayscape, grounded on the theory of ‘The Production of Space’, to examine the role of railway station districts as catalysts of urban development through the social production of urban space. The present research sets out to establish the notion of Railwayscape and apply it in a railway heritage, i.e., the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway (DHR) and its point of inception, Siliguri City, India. Accordingly, a criteria-based evaluation of four railway station districts (New Jalpaiguri, Siliguri Town, Siliguri Junction, and Sukna) in Siliguri and its surroundings was performed. The information regarding the selected four railway station districts is obtained through field observation and key informant consultation, supplemented by published literature and remote sensing data. This evaluation is succeeded by the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats (SWOT) analysis accentuating the potential strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats associated with the selected four railway station districts and their prospects to become the potential Railwayscape. The results of this research show that there is no railway station district in Siliguri that can fully meet the demands of the locals and tourists, therefore, relfecting a lack of awareness of the historical values of these districts. The results also indicate that there are significant differences in the relative potentials of railway station districts to become the Railwayscape in urban environment. The outcomes of this research, therefore, are expected to encourage policy-making insitutions and practitioners to realise the ‘place value’ of some railway station districts and their potentials to yield better economic, social and structural virtue for a wide range of actors.

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    Students’ sustainability consciousness with the three dimensions of sustainability: Does the locus of control play a role?
    Durdana OVAIS
    Regional Sustainability    2023, 4 (1): 13-27.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.2023.02.002
    Abstract43)   HTML113)    PDF (357KB)(41)      

    The persistent environmental problems and the growing difficulty to achieve sustainable development require a re-evaluation of person’ sustainable knowledge, attitude, and behaviour. To go to where we want to go, we must first assess where we are now. The study investigated the level of sustainability consciousness of students in India, and sustainability consciousness was expressed in sustainability knowledge, attitude, and behaviour. Sustainability consciousness was further examined using the three dimensions, such as environment, society, and economy. By drawing the perception map of students and studying the role of the locus of control, the reasons why sustainability knowledge does not appear in sustainability behaviour were analyzed. Quantitative analysis was conducted for a sample of 205 students from higher educational institutions across central India (Madhya Pradesh) from January to March in 2022. The data were analyzed using the SPSS 26 and Smart Partial Least Square (PLS) 3.0. The research revealed that sustainability attitude impacts sustainability behaviour more than sustainability knowledge. The results showed that respondents’ sustainability knowledge is higher than their sustainability attitude and behaviour. Moreover, it was discovered that economic concerns can lead to sustainability behaviour. In order to study respondents’ behaviour regarding sustainability consciousness, the study divided respondents into two groups according to the locus of control: the internal and external locus of control. It was found that most respondents thought whatever happened around them was beyond their control. Further, the locus of control influenced sustainability behaviour in groups with the internal locus of control. The study helps to explain why sustainability knowledge and attitude cannot translate into sustainability behaviour and provides a basis for achieving sustainable development. The conclusions of this study are crucial for governments, educational institutions, and organizations that empower youth to change their behaviour.

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    Spatial restructuring and the logic of industrial land redevelopment in urban China: IV. A case study of jointly redevelopment by multi-actors
    GAO Jinlong
    Regional Sustainability    2023, 4 (1): 44-53.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.2023.02.003
    Abstract57)   HTML7)    PDF (601KB)(13)      

    Within the inventory era, urban shrinkage characterized by economic decline and space decay has been widely witnessed in China. The modes and trajectories of urban redevelopment have thus become areas of major concern for both policymakers and scholars. Taking the multi-actor participation nature of redevelopment, this paper stemming from the game-theoretical approach demonstrates in empirical terms on two major fronts. First, the redevelopment of industrial land without the transfer of land use right is shown to be deadlocked by the incapacitation of the original land-user and unlocked with the participation of the new developer. Second, the preference of the original land-user to maximize its interests by operating by itself rather than continue to cooperate with the new developer is observed in the post-redevelopment stage. Therein, the entrepreneurial local government acts only as a “mediator” between the two market entities and tends not to directly intervene in their cooperation. Thus that, it is the reasonable distribution of potential benefits or the pricing of different rights in the land property right bundle rather than their definition that matters more for land redevelopment. Because the delineation of land property rights has never been a problem in a mature land market, particularly for stock industrial land.

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    Evaluating rural sustainable land use from a system perspective based on the ecosystem service value
    LI Xiaokang, LEI Lin
    Regional Sustainability    2023, 4 (1): 96-114.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.2023.03.002
    Abstract73)   HTML7)    PDF (1139KB)(37)      

    Rural sustainable land use (RSLU) is important to China’s implementation of the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development Goals and the goals of rural revitalization strategy in China. Research on RSLU is key to understanding the impact of human activities on rural sustainability. This paper explored the evaluation method of RSLU from a system perspective based on the ecosystem service value (ESV). Three systems were proposed for consideration when conducting this evaluation method. One was the sustainability of the land system, the other was the sustainability of the eco-economic system, and the rest was the sustainability of the land-eco-economy system. Indicators including (1) land use intensity and land system stability, (2) gross domestic production (GDP), ESV, and the eco-economic harmony degree (EEHD), and (3) coupling degree and coupling coordination degree were used to analyze the sustainability of the land, eco-economic, and land-eco-economic systems, respectively. An empirical research on Yanhe eco-village was conducted and the study period extended from 2008 to 2020. The results showed that forest land had always accounted for more than 81.20% of the total area in Yanhe eco-village from 2008 to 2020, which greatly influenced land system stability and restricted economic development. This feature contrasted with RSLU. The total ESV of Yanhe eco-village declined by 1.60×106 CNY during 2008-2020 because of land use changes. The EEHD was -0.01, which presented that there was a very slight unharmonious between ecology and economy. The coupling degree and coupling coordination degree showed that the development between the land and eco-economic systems exhibited a coupling coordination relationship. The results indicated that ecology and economy in Yanhe eco-village will change significantly in response to land use changes in rural areas, which further revealed the dynamic linkage between human beings and nature. Moreover, opposite variation tendencies in land system stability and ESV revealed that the contradiction between the high stability of the land system and well development of the eco-economic system. The results of this study implied that it is necessary and useful to integrate ESV into land management to achieve RSLU.

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    Any alternatives to rice? Ethnobotanical insights into the dietary use of edible plants by the Higaonon tribe in Bukidnon Province, the Philippines
    Dave Paladin BUENAVISTA, Eefke Maria MOLLEE, Morag MCDONALD
    Regional Sustainability    2022, 3 (2): 95-109.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.2022.04.002
    Abstract234)   HTML10)    PDF (2129KB)(39)      

    Though considered an agricultural country, the Philippines is the world’s largest importer of rice. The persistent problem of insufficient rice supply, however, has been exacerbated by economic crises and natural calamities. Yet, for the Higaonon tribe in Bukidnon Province, the Philippines, the rich agrobiodiversity and wild edible plants are vital for food security and resilience since the mountainous terrain in this province presents a challenge for rice cultivation. To gain insight from the indigenous edible plant knowledge of the Higaonon tribe, we conducted an ethnobotanical research to document the diversity, utilization, and biocultural refugia of both cultivated and wild edible plants. A total of 76 edible plant species belonging to 62 genera and 36 botanical families were documented. The most represented botanical families included the Fabaceae, Solanaceae, and Zingiberaceae. In terms of dietary usage, 3 species were categorized as cereals; 8 species were white roots, tubers, and plantains; 3 species were vitamin A-rich vegetables and tubers; 16 species were green leafy vegetables; 12 species were categorized as other vegetables; 2 species were vitamin A-rich fruits; 27 species were classified as other fruits; 7 species were legumes, nuts, and seeds; and 8 species were used as spices, condiments, and beverages. Using the statistical software R with ethnobotanyR package, we further calculated the ethnobotanical indices (use-report (UR), use-value (UV), number of use (NU), and fidelity level (FL)) from 1254 URs in all 9 food use-categories. The species with the highest UV and UR were from a variety of nutrient-rich edible plants such as Ipomoea batatas (L.) Lam., Musa species, Colocasia esculenta (L.) Schott, Zea mays L., and Manihot esculenta Crantz. The extensive utilization of root and tuber crops along with corn and plantain that contain a higher amount of energy and protein, carbohydrates, minerals, and vitamins were shown to be an important nutrient-rich alternatives to rice. Whilst males appeared to be more knowledgeable of edible plant species collected from the forests and communal areas, there were no significant differences between males and females in terms of knowledge of edible plants collected from homegardens, riverbanks, and farms. The various food collection sites of the Higaonon tribe may be considered as food biocultural refugia given their socio-ecological function in food security, biodiversity conservation, and preservation of indigenous knowledge.

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    Sustainable livelihood security in Odisha, India: A district level analysis
    Braja SUNDAR PANI, Diptimayee MISHRA
    Regional Sustainability    2022, 3 (2): 110-121.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.2022.07.003
    Abstract191)   HTML6)    PDF (860KB)(42)      

    Sustainable livelihood security (SLS) is an integrating framework that encompasses current concerns and policy requirements for ecological, social, and economic dimensions of sustainable development. It carries particular importance for developing economies. This study intends to verify the relative status of SLS of the 30 districts in Odisha, which is a backward state in eastern India. In this study, a total of 22 relevant indicators relating to the three components of SLS—ecological security, social equity, and economic efficiency have been taken, based on various kinds of government reports. The principal component analysis (PCA) has been used to ascertain the indicators and the importance of each of them to the corresponding component of SLS. The ecological security index (ESI), social equity index (SEI), economic efficiency index (EEI), and composite sustainable livelihood security index (CSLSI) of each district of Odisha were calculated through the min-max normalization technique. The results revealed that there are wide variations in SLS among the districts of Odisha. In this study, the districts are categorized into four levels based on scores of ESI, SEI, EEI, and CSLSI as very low (<0.400), low (0.400-0.549), medium (0.550-0.700), and high (>0.700). According to the classification result of CSLSI, 2 districts are found to be in the very low category, 20 districts are under the low sustainability category, 8 districts are in the medium category, and none of the districts are found to be in the high sustainability category. The district of Sambalpur ranks the highest with a CSLSI score of 0.624. The bottom five districts are Gajapati, Bolangir, Nabarangpur, Kandhamal, and Malkangiri, having the CSLSI scores of 0.438, 0.435, 0.406, 0.391, and 0.344, respectively. The result of this study suggests that region-specific, systematic, and proactive approaches are desirable for balanced development in Odisha. Further, policy intervention is required to implement more inclusive tribal welfare policies.

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    Impact of climate change on agricultural production: A case of Rasuwa District, Nepal
    Binod DAWADI, Anjula SHRESTHA, Ram Hari ACHARYA, Yam Prasad DHITAL, Rohini DEVKOTA
    Regional Sustainability    2022, 3 (2): 122-132.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.2022.07.002
    Abstract247)   HTML3)    PDF (1041KB)(31)      

    Climate change is expected to threaten the developing countries the most. Nepal is considered one of the five countries most vulnerable to climate change in the world. The mountainous area such as Rasuwa District in Nepal is more vulnerable due to complex topography, human activity (tourism), and climate change. In this context, we carried out this study to assess the climate change and its impact on agriculture production as well as people’s perceptions on the impact of climate change. The long-term (1980-2014) observed climate data (temperature and precipitation) and field-based survey data on people’s perceptions were analyzed. Mann-Kendall trend test and Sen’s slope estimation were used to analyze the temperature and precipitation trends. Furthermore, key informant interviews (KIIs) and focal group discussions (FGDs) were conducted to understand people’s perceptions of the impact of climate change on agricultural production. Further, ERA5 and APHRODITE datasets were used to compare the in situ climate data. The maximum temperature and total precipitation in summer monsoon (June-September) were found increasing significantly at rates of 0.07°C/a and 19.89 mm/a, respectively. But the minimum winter temperature and winter precipitation were found decrease by 0.05°C/a and 4.89 mm/a, respectively. Moreover, a large number of respondents reported a decrease in millet and wheat productions while an increase in potato production over the considered time duration (1990-2014). It is noteworthy that the respondents from the mid-elevation regions perceived an increasing trend in crop production compared to those from the low elevation regions. In recent years, people living in the high elevation regions of Rasuwa District have started to shift their cropping calendar to increase agricultural production. This study will provide useful information for policy-makers in formulating adaptation strategies in mountainous areas of Nepal.

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    Willingness of returning migrant workers to purchase houses: A case study of 45 villages in Henan Province, China
    WANG Yuchan, GAO Genghe, NING Xiaoju, LI Yuanzheng, NIU Ning, GUO Yaqi
    Regional Sustainability    2022, 3 (2): 133-145.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.2022.07.001
    Abstract267)   HTML3)    PDF (624KB)(28)      

    The willingness of returning migrant workers to purchase houses has an important impact on local urbanization. At present, there are few researches on the willingness of returning migrant workers to purchase houses. The existing researches mostly focus on the perspective of sociology and economics, and few studies are conducted from the perspective of geography. Based on the survey data of 45 villages in Henan Province of China in 2019, this study used binary logistic method to study the influencing factors of the willingness of returning migrant workers to purchase houses. The willingness of returning migrant workers to purchase houses is affected by many factors, such as personal, family, village, and returning factors. Among them, age and returning period are negatively correlated with the willingness of returning migrant workers to purchase houses. Factors such as years of education, years of working, and per capita income of village are positively correlated with the willingness of returning migrant workers to purchase houses. Returning migrant workers in plains and hilly areas are more willing to purchase houses than those in mountainous areas. The formation of the willingness to purchase houses is mainly related to economic foundation, age, marital status, and other factors. Returning migrant workers are becoming more willing to purchase houses, and the expected locations are mainly concentrated in the county seats. In the context of China’s high density of rural population and rapid urbanization, more returning migrant workers are expected to purchase houses in cities and towns for the sake of employment, marriage, children’s education, and access to public services. As a result, there is an extensive market of potential purchasers, which affects the development of the local urban real estate industry and is of great significance for returning migrant workers to truly integrate into the cities. However, some returning migrant workers still choose to purchase houses in villages, mainly affected by traditional concepts, living habits, and the better development of villages. Therefore, it is of great practical significance to explore the willingness of returning migrant workers to purchase houses, so as to master the flow laws and future behavior of returning migrant workers to purchase houses.

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    Evaluation of carbon emissions associated with land use and cover change in Zhengzhou City of China
    HE Jianjian, ZHANG Pengyan
    Regional Sustainability    2022, 3 (1): 1-11.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.2022.03.002
    Abstract333)   HTML13)    PDF (3234KB)(124)      

    Studies on carbon emissions associated with land use and cover change (LUCC) are key to understanding the impact of human activities on regional sustainability. In this study, we analyzed the temporal and spatial changes in carbon emissions associated with LUCC for production, living, and ecological spaces in Zhengzhou City of China. Landsat remote sensing images were used to classify the land use and land cover (LULC) types in Zhengzhou City in 1988, 2001, 2009, and 2015. Carbon emissions associated with LUCC were evaluated using a spatial gradient model and the niche mechanism. It was found that during 1988-2015, carbon emissions associated with LUCC in Zhengzhou City increased by 17.1×106 t, while the carbon sink resulted from cultivated land, forests, water bodies, and unused land decreased significantly. Most of the increase in carbon emissions associated with LUCC occurred in the center of the city. The peak carbon emissions were located in the northeastern, southeastern, northwestern, and southwestern regions of Zhengzhou City, and carbon emissions varied considerably in the different spatial gradient rings over time. Among the three spaces, carbon emissions associated with LUCC were mainly affected by the living space. The population size and population urbanization rate were negatively correlated with the ecological space and positively correlated with the production and living spaces. Our results highlight that Zhengzhou City should take the new urbanization path of urban transformation development and ecological civilization construction to ensure the realization of the promised carbon emission reduction targets.

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    Illustrating the multi-stakeholder perceptions of environmental pollution based on big data: Lessons from China
    LIU Haimeng, LIU Huaming, CHENG Yi
    Regional Sustainability    2022, 3 (1): 12-26.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.2022.03.003
    Abstract263)   HTML7)    PDF (3719KB)(78)      

    The relationship between stakeholders and the environment influences sustainable development and human wellbeing. To illustrate the multi-stakeholder perceptions of environmental pollution in China, we interpreted a feedback loop in the perception-behavior-environment nexus from the perspective of the coupled human-environment system, measured the differences of environmental perceptions among five stakeholders (the public, government, media, companies, and scientists) and regions (including 31 provinces, autonomous regions, and municipalities in China, with exceptions of Taiwan of China, Hong Kong of China, and Macao of China due to a lack of data) using big data, and made a comparison between the perceptions and the actual pollution situation. The results showed that the five stakeholders exhibited similar perceptions of environmental pollution at the national scale, with air pollution being of most concern, followed by water pollution and soil pollution. There were significant spatial differences in environmental perceptions. All stakeholders in the developed regions in eastern China paid relatively high attention to environmental issues, while those in the northwestern regions paid much less attention. There existed a mutual influence and interaction among the different stakeholders. More attention should be paid to air pollution in Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region and Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region, water pollution in Hainan Province, Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region, Heilongjiang Province, and Jilin Province, and soil pollution in Hainan Province, Fujian Province, and Jilin Province. This paper provides a research paradigm on multi-stakeholder environmental perceptions based on big data, and the results provide a background reference for regional environmental governance.

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    Regional landscape transformation and sustainability of the rural homegarden agroforestry system in the Chengdu Plain, China
    ZHOU Lian, HUANG Xueyuan, ZHAO Chunmei, PU Tiancun, ZHANG Lei
    Regional Sustainability    2022, 3 (1): 68-81.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.2022.04.001
    Abstract238)   HTML4)    PDF (11842KB)(99)      

    Traditional rural homegarden agroforestry system in the Chengdu Plain of China, called “Linpan” in Chinese, integrates the ecological functions of the landscape with human production activities. Studying the driving mechanisms of rural landscape changes in the Chengdu Plain is of great significance from stakeholders’ perspective. Taking the Pidu Linpan Farming System (PLFS) in the suburban area of Chengdu (designated as one of China-Nationally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems in 2020) as a case, this study combined remote sensing image analysis, oral history interviews, and focus group interviews to elucidate the driving forces of landscape changes in the PLFS. The results show that tourism development, traffic accessibility, economic demand, and agricultural heritage protection measure are the main driving forces promoting the stability and maintenance of the traditional homegardens. In contrast, population ageing, land circulation, centralized residence, climate change, and living and recreational need are the forces leading to adverse changes in the traditional homegardens. In addition, these driving forces have led to the gradual abandonment of traditional agricultural activities and critical issues related to rural landscape planning and management. The current research indicates that infrastructure construction and increased traditional agricultural income are considered as the best practices of local stakeholders, promoting the development of the protected homegardens of heritage sites and tourist destinations. Finally, we put forward some suggestions to improve and maintain the traditional rural landscape: (1) establishing a benefit-sharing mechanism; (2) establishing a training system with traditional technology and culture; (3) strengthening infrastructure construction; (4) promoting the development of the agricultural industry; (5) improving the cultural quality of farmers; and (6) establishing a management system with legal effects. This research can provide a basis for the formulation of rural landscape planning and the orderly and healthy development of agricultural heritage in Chengdu Plain.

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    Exploring the complex structural evolution of global primary product trade network
    JIANG Xiaorong, LIU Qing, WANG Shenglan
    Regional Sustainability    2022, 3 (1): 82-94.   DOI: 10.1016/j.regsus.2022.03.006
    Abstract263)   HTML6)    PDF (4539KB)(99)      

    The production and trade of primary products had a growing impact on the economic security of all countries and regions, and the strategic position of these products in the global trade network was becoming increasingly prominent. Based on complex network theory, this paper explored the spatial pattern and complex structural evolution of the global primary product trade network (GPPTN) during 1985-2015 by using index methods, such as centrality, Sankey diagram, and structure entropy, focusing on the diversified spatial structure of China’s import and export markets for primary products (with exceptions of Taiwan of China, Hong Kong of China, and Macao of China due to a lack of data) and their geographical implications for China’s energy security. The research offered the following key findings. The GPPTN showed an obvious spatial heterogeneity pattern, and the area of import consumption was more concentrated; however, the overall trend was decentralized. The trade center of gravity shifted eastwards and reflected the rise of emerging markets. The overall flow of the GPPTN was from west to east and from south to north. In terms of the community detection of the GPPTN, North America, Europe, and Asia increasingly presented an unbalanced “tripartite confrontation”. China’s exports of primary products were mainly concentrated in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and other peripheral regions of Asia, and its imports undergone a major transformation, gradually expanding from the peripheral regions of Asia to Africa, the Middle East, Latin America, and other parts of the world. Energy fuels also became the largest imported primary products. Based on the changing trend of structural entropy and main market share, the analysis showed that the stable supply of China’s energy diversification was gradually realized. In particular, the cooperation dividend proposed by the Belt and Road initiative became an important turning point and a strong support for the expansion of China’s energy market diversification pattern and guarantee of energy security.

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