Land use and sustainability as key challenge of a globalized world: A Telecoupling Approach
Human consumption of food and agricultural products have a significant impact on the environment and the societies in the regions where they are produced. Given Europe’s large and growing land use footprint abroad, Europe has a special responsibility to develop concepts and tools needed to achieve sustainability in an interconnected world. Various sectors, consumers, businesses and politicians are increasingly demanding more environmentally and socially sustainable land use both inside and outside Europe.
However, the limitations of current research approaches to adequately understand and address the increasing complexity of land system dynamics, which are often characterized by strong non-linearity, feedback mechanisms, and local contexts, and where places of production, trade, and consumption of land-based products are increasingly separated. Land systems are increasingly coupled across large distances via flows of biomass, capital, information and regulations. Given that distal couplings are often key in shaping how land is used, a new generation of scientists and entrepreneurs is needed.
Future EU policy will consider the negative effects of telecoupling. To facilitate this political process, it is important to be involved in this process from an early stage. For this reason, a team of researchers, coordinated by the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, has developed a European training network in order to better integrate research, innovation and social responsibility framed around the concept of telecoupling, and of course, where agriculture meets the environment, ELO plays a role.
Grant Agreement no.: 765408.
This project receives funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation programme under Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement No. 765408.