List of Sessions

List of Accepted Sessions

*Sessions are listed by titles in alphabetical order

Session Title Chair/Co-chair Session Abstract
1 Changing societies under extreme environments in Asia Dr. Toshiya Okuro

Dr. Teiji Watanabe

Asia covers the high-altitude areas under extreme low-temperature such as the Pamir, Himalaya, Tibet, and Karakorum. It is also characterized by the extreme arid areas such as the western and northern China and the eastern Pamir. The drivers responsible for the societal changes and resultant land use land cover changes in such countries and regions are not limited to climate change, civil wars, and sudden change in political institution, but include urban-rural teleconnections and reinforcement of governmental control. This session aims to recognize the diversity of such changes in different countries and regions, identify the drivers responsible for the changes, and discuss future sustainability in the changing societies. We invite from case studies to synthesis studies, focusing on Asian issues. But comparisons with other parts of the world for global synthesis are not excluded.
2 Environmental impacts on land caused by outdoor recreation: assessment, monitoring and management Dr. Teiji Watanabe

Dr. Aleksandra Tomczyk

Dr. Marek Ewertowski

Protected natural areas such as national parks often constitute regions that are rich in bio/geodiversity with beautiful scenery. Currently, they are under increasing pressure to supply both conservation and recreation, which can lead to conflicts of interest. The frequent trade-offs between conservation and recreation pose challenges for management and requires decisions to be made about how to prioritise and direct management actions. This session aims to present the state-of-the-art methodologies of monitoring and assessment of environmental impacts of outdoor recreation in different environments, and discuss their application, which would be beneficial to managers of natural protected areas of high conservation value. We invite contributions from a wide range of topics covering all aspects of outdoor recreation impacts and their sociological and environmental consequences. Studies linking direct field-based observations with modelling and predictions are particularly encouraged.
3 Hidden impacts of telecoupled food production and consumption Ms. Anna

Dr. Yue Dou

Dr. Jianguo Liu

Global food trade is necessary to balance supply and demand across the world due to regional differences including climate, diet preference, and population growth. In the past decades, global food trade has increased exponentially in trading quantity and commodity types, resulting in drastic impacts on food production and global environment. The integrated telecoupling framework offers novel perspectives for researchers to study food production and consumption changes and the related environmental issues. It connects coupled human and natural systems over distances by flows, which provides a systematic analytic lens to understand ecological dynamics and socioeconomic changes by uncovering mechanisms that may be masked by other approaches.

The goal of this session is to demonstrate applications of the telecoupling framework to study the socioeconomic and environmental impacts of food production and consumption, such as distant food production impacts on local environment, and land and water footprints in trading countries driven by distant consumption demand. The presentations in this session reveal complex mechanisms for understanding local food production and consumption, and provide useful information and analytical perspectives for sustainable food production.

4 Land—ocean connectivity and interactions on ecosystem structures, processes and services Dr. Hideaki Shibata
This session aims to share the current knowledge and research needs on land and ocean connection and interaction on various ecosystem perspectives including ecosystem structure, functioning, biodiversity, land-use/cover changes and ecosystem services.  Individual case-studies, site-based observation, cross-site synthesis, process-based modelling in various temporal and spatial scales will be invited in this session.
5 Land Systems at the Nexus of Water, Energy and Food in the Lower Mekong River Basin Dr. Jiaguo Qi

Dr. Peilei Fan


Land systems serve as the point of intersection across the interconnected challenges of meeting the water, energy and food needs of a growing planetary population in the context of climate change. This session will explore social-ecological – or coupled human and natural – systems approaches to studying the WEF Nexus, in which investigators from multiple social and natural science disciplines engage with a range of stakeholders in the public and private sectors, as well as civil society, to address key societal challenges.

The Lower Mekong River Basin is a prime exemplar of the WEF Nexus, involving large-scale, dynamic interactions between climate change, human decisions and activities, and wetland ecosystems. The dynamic annual flood pulse is at the core of a productive riverine ecological system and extraordinary aquatic habitat. For thousands of years, food production in the basin has relied on timely rainfall and the seasonal flows of the rivers and streams of the Mekong. Fisheries in rivers, lakes, and wetlands benefitted from abundant freshwater and nutrients supplied by seasonal flood surges, while crops were grown on rich soils timed with plentiful seasonal rainfall; together these patterns supported livelihoods in the region for generations.

However, this is changing: the rhythm and intensity of the Asian monsoon have noticeably changed, with more frequent floods and intense droughts devastating crops and dramatically altering aquatic ecosystems, and deeply disrupting rural livelihoods. Meanwhile, rising temperatures in the Himalayas have increased snowmelt rates causing glacial retreat, and altering discharges to the Mekong headwaters; this disrupts streamflows and impacts downstream aquatic ecosystems. Human activities further alter aquatic ecosystems and associated ecosystem services. For example, the proliferation of hydroelectric dams changes seasonal water flows and impacts the phenology and ecology of interconnected lake and wetland ecosystems. While providing much needed electricity, the dams negatively impact lake and wetland ecology, adversely affecting the delivery of associated ecosystem services upon which local communities rely.

An international community of scholars has coalesced to address these issues, and the session will provide an opportunity to showcase their findings, and to further consolidate cooperation, and spur synthesis.

6 Land Teleconnection, Governance and Urban Sustainability Dr. Yu-Hsin Tsai

Dr. Jing-Chein Lu

While more than half of the global population is concentrated in urban areas, high population densities and rapidly changing economy has been recognized as the major cause of global environment change. Under the context of achieving global sustainability, recent scholarly discussion on urbanization calls for the thinking beyond urban areas to include the effects of land teleconnections with distal sites. Previous studies on assessing urban sustainability focused mostly on a city or a metropolitan region itself and lack the cross-boundary perspective on the interactions between the city or area being studied and the other remote urban or rural areas. However, the city or metropolis has never been a closed system, its development has reciprocal effects on the changes of land use and economic development of other remote areas that provide resources and materials for it. There is a need to incorporate the concept of land teleconnections for assessing the effect of urbanization on the urban sustainability. The theme of land teleconnection has been proposed in the science plans of core projects of Global Land Project (GLP) and Urbanization and Global Environmental Change (UGEC) of previous IGBP and IHDP. This session intends to call for attention on the subject and issues of “Land Teleconnection, Governance and Urban Sustainability”. Driving forces of urbanization will affect the urban and environmental systems in a city, and the effects of urban land teleconnections contribute to interaction and feedback between the urban system and the environmental system both within the study area and with the distal areas.

Therefore, the purposes of this session are: (1) to rethink the implications and scope of urbanization on urban sustainability from the viewpoint of urban land teleconnections; (2) to identify the driving forces of urbanization; (3) to analyze the teleconnected influence of urbanization on distal areas; and (4) to propose strategies of urban governance and planning with consideration of urban land teleconnection.

7 Land Teleconnection, Governance and Urban Sustainability: The Prospective of Agricultural Production and Food Consumption Dr. Chia-Tsung Yeh

Dr. Ying-Chieh Lee

Dr. Tsung-Chen Lee



Cities are the areas of industrial agglomeration and high population density. Urban production and consumption activities affect not only the environmental quality in cities per se, but also that in distal areas through land teleconnection channels. From the perspective of global sustainability, the effects of urban land teleconnection on distal sites should be carefully examined and properly integrated in the design of policies associated with sustainable urban development. In view of the fact that the concept of land teleconnection has been highlighted in the science plans of core projects of Global Land Project (GLP) and Urbanization and Global Environmental Change (UGEC) of previous IGBP and IHDP, this session entitled “Land Teleconnection, Governance and Urban Sustainability: The Prospective of Agricultural Production and Food Consumption” aims at calling for special attention on the subject and issues of land teleconnection resulting from agricultural production and food consumption. Specifically, the purposes of this session are: (1) to develop quantitative approach in estimating the impacts of land teleconnection related to agricultural production and urban food consumption; (2) to identify the linkage of agricultural production and urban food consumption at different spatial scales; (3) to provide quantitative evidences of teleconneted influences of urban food consumption; and (4) to propose strategies of urban governance and planning concerning urban land, teleconnection and food consumption.
8 Opportunities and challenges of land use/cover mapping in the new remote sensing era Dr. Jinwei Dong

Dr. Wenbin Wu

As a key component of global changes, land cover and land use maps have been increasingly important for improved understanding of global environmental changes and feedbacks between social and environmental systems. With the development of the remote sensing technology as well as the improvement of the mapping algorithms, a set of national and global scale land cover/use products with higher spatial and temporal resolutions have been developed to fill this gap. With the free releases of increasing remote sensing data, we are entering an unprecedented era of remote sensing big data. A lots of new algorithms and approaches using the power of the time series data analyses improved the existing efforts in identifying more specific agricultural, forest land use types, such as rice paddies, soybean, rubber plantation, oil palm, etc. These new progresses provide new and improved data products to support sustainable development goals. This session expects to provide an opportunity for the community to exchange the new progress in the land use/cover mapping field in the context of the big remotely sensed data. We welcome any studies related to the application of remote sensing for the analysis of land system sciences, including multi-sensor, multi-resolution, multi-temporal remote sensing analysis, and specific case studies in different regions of the world.
9 Solar Power Installation and Land Use: Implications for Food-Energy-Water Nexus and Renewable Energy Policy Dr. Ching-Cheng Chang

Dr. Shih-Hsun Hsu

Benefiting from new innovations in different systems and falling manufacturing costs, solar energy has become one of the most promising renewable energy solutions to meet the CO2 emission target throughout the globe. The most common and important application of solar energy is solar photovoltaic (PV) system, which has the advantage of lower maintenance cost than other energy sources. Solar PV system became a mainstream technology to develop the solar energy. Large surface areas are needed to install solar PV system, and agricultural land is considered as a solution to supply the enough space for solar energy. The floating solar farms were also built on manmade reservoirs or lakes by many countries with space limitation as part of the country’s drive to exploit more renewable energy. This will help protect agricultural land and terrestrial ecosystems from being developed for energy use. However, the development is facing many challenges from the conflicts between solar energy production and natural resource conservation to the design of the most effective policy instruments.Consumers’ satisfaction and financial incentives by the government are often the major barriers that limit diffusion of solar energy.

The purpose of this session is to discuss, from the food-energy-water nexus perspectives, the trade-offs and conflict arising from the development of solar power installed on agricultural land, manmade water surfaces and residential buildings in the cities. The session will also explore new research ideas and results in terms of the potentials of agrivoltaic farming, floating and rooftop solar projects, and generate practical suggestions for solar energy development for policy makers.

10 Telecoupled flows across scales Dr. Yue Dou

Dr. Jianguo Liu

Ms. Anna Herzberger



The world has become increasingly telecoupled through distant flows of information, matter, energy, organisms, people, money, and technology. Through connecting people and the environment in one place to those in distant places, the flows can have enormous impacts across telecoupled human and natural systems. The telecoupling framework provides novel perspectives for researchers to investigate the mechanisms and impacts of flows on the human and natural systems that are far away. By considering flows, agents, causes, and effects in a systematic way using the telecoupling framework, researchers can reveal feedbacks, emergent properties, time lags, legacy effects, tipping points, spillover effects and underlying processes of distant interactions.

The goal of this session is to showcase telecoupling studies that use flows across local to global scales as the focal analysis to address important issues relevant to environmental sustainability such as legal and illegal trade, migratory species, and transportation infrastructures. The presentations explicitly uncover the flows, the agents that facilitate or hinder these flows, and/or their socioeconomic and environmental causes and effects on the telecoupled systems. They also demonstrate analytical approaches that are useful for telecoupling research, enhance fundamental understanding of environmental sustainability and human well-being, and provide useful information for effective governance around the world.

11 Water resilience on an intertwined planet Dr. Lan Wang -Erlandsson

Dr. MakotoTaniguchi

Dr. Line Gordon


Resilience is commonly defined as the ability of a socio-ecological system to adapt and develop in face of change. It is an essential notion for the transitioning towards sustainable land systems in a world characterized by complexity and change. The basis of all life on land is water, which influences resilience by: (1) controlling terrestrial ecosystem functions and services, (2) its own state in terms of water quantity and quality, and (3) driving moisture feedback (Rockström et al., 2014).

Today, we live on an intertwined, human-dominated planet where water resilience connects distant places through both climatic teleconnections and anthropogenic telecouplings. Anthropogenic telecouplings can be indirectly related to water cross-sectorally through land-use change driven by e.g., international trade, financial flows, or market globalization. Climatic teleconnections include long-way atmospheric transport of moisture, air pollution effects on remote rainfall, and distant modulation of monsoon circulation. While climatic teleconnections are natural phenomenon, the accelerating anthropogenic impacts on land and atmosphere are creating new surprises through the modulation or triggering of such teleconnections. These telecouplings and teleconnections, and their potential interactions, entail both water resilience risks and new opportunities for water governance.

This session aims to contribute to the understanding of the role of water for transitioning towards resilient and sustainable development in land system in the light of the many new remote connections appearing in the Anthropocene. To achieve this, we propose to bring together water resilience research related to both atmospheric teleconnections and anthropogenic telecouplings related to land cover change.


More sessions are forthcoming……

 *Preliminary programme will be published by 1st May 2018.


List of Special/Training Sessions

*Sessions listed are not open for any abstracts submission

Session Title
1 Land Resources Core Project – Modeling dynamic changes and mechanisms of land systems
2 Urbanization and Environmental Change
3 COUPLED – Challenges to telecoupling research
4 Telecoupling Toolbox: Geospatial Software Tools for the Analysis of Telecoupled Human-Natural Systems