Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Online U_Lecture May 31st by Dr Elias Symeonakis

Tuesday 31 May 2016, 6-7 PM (CET)
Dr Elias Symeonakis, Senior Lecturer - Manchester Metropolitan University & UNIGIS UK

Assessing Land Degradation and Desertification using Vegetation Index Data: Current Frameworks and Future Directions 

Land degradation and desertification has been ranked as a major environmental and social issue for the coming decades. Thus, the observation and early detection of degradation is a primary objective for a number of scientific and policy organisations, with remote sensing methods being a candidate choice for the development of monitoring systems.

This webinar reviews the statistical and ecological frameworks of assessing land degradation and desertification using vegetation index data. The development of multi-temporal analysis as a desertification assessment technique is reviewed, with a focus on how current practice has been shaped by controversy and dispute within the literature. The statistical techniques commonly employed are examined from both a statistical as well as ecological point of view, and recommendations are made for future research directions. The scientific requirements for degradation and desertification monitoring systems identified here are: (I) the validation of methodologies in a robust and comparable manner; and (II) the detection of degradation at minor intensities and magnitudes. It is also established that the multi-temporal analysis of vegetation index data can provide a sophisticated measure of ecosystem health and variation, and that, over the last 30 years, considerable progress has been made in the respective research.