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Centre for Earth and Environmental Science Research

An assessment of archival sources for monitoring the occupancy of agricultural land in South-East England

Executive Summary
ResearchersProf. N. S. Walford (Co-Investigator): CEESR
Dr Richard Armitage, School of Environment and Life Sciences, University of Salford, Salford, M5 4WT
Funding Body/SourceKingston University
DurationApr 2001-Mar 2007
Project SummaryThe central aim of this project is to explore the feasibility of enhancing traditional geodemographic or area classifications by incorporating environmental indicators.

Since the late 1970s classifications have been produced that discriminate between small areas in respect of their socio-economic and demographic characteristics. Such area classifications have been produced both within the public domain by the Office for National Statistics and by a number of commercial organisations.The characteristics of the different types of area are often presented as 'pen portraits' accompanied by photographic images (see Figure 1).

Figure 1: Contrasting nearby areas in Swansea, South Wales.

Despite the use of increasingly smaller areas, such as enumeration districts and now postcode-based Output Areas, simple measures, such as population density, and more complex multivariate analyses, do not fully encapsulate what it is like to live in these different places. This project combines information relating to the natural and built environment taken from aerial photographs and topographic mapping with traditional small area Population Census statistics in order to produce alternative socio-environmental measures for discriminating between localities.

Conference Presentations

2005 (April) Walford, N. S. and Armitage, R. P. Census-based socio-economic area classification: an environmentally enhanced version GISRUK05 Conference, Glasgow.

2005 (August) Walford, N. S. and Armitage, R. P. Land cover types and census-based socio-economic area classification: an ordination approach Royal Geographical Society with the Institute of British Geographers International Conference, London.

2007 (April) Walford, N. S. and Armitage, R. P. A comparison between using Ordnance Survey LandLineTM and MasterMapTM products to derive land cover data for use in socio-environmental area classification, GISRUK07 Conference, Maynooth, Ireland.

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