7 Conclusions

In the Fourth Paradigm era, landscape research would be more transparent, more global and local in nature and richer in data diversity and availability. This gives landscape science an edge over most other disciplines. The significance of coupling the Fourth Paradigm, the Anthropocene and landscape science is to create an opportunity for researchers to develop local and global insights to improve population-environment well-being. For example, Europe builds diverse and substantial landscape databases, used effectively for sustainable spatial decision-making. Landscape researchers would benefit from more detailed global mapping and other spatial databases. However, local data acquisition in developing countries remains a great challenge. The planning and documentation of data is a precursor to all effective and sustainable spatial planning. Data collection is also the bedrock from which landscape policies would emerge. The success of landscape research in Europe and North America has its roots in enhanced data collection and management. Organisations such as the International Association for Landscape Ecology (External LinkIALE) and the Society for Urban Ecology (External LinkSURE) should take a lead in setting data agenda for more landscape-centred arguments on landscapes in the Anthropocene. Landscape research and policy can only succeed if the global public is well informed. We also believe that universities and associated institutions, funding agencies, governments, researchers and industry are key players in data production, policy and dissemination.
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