The use of gravity concepts for agricultural land-use dynamics. A case study on the Algarve

E. de Noronha Vaz, T. de Noronha Vaz, P. Nijkamp

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Recent research emphasises the role of small towns as main players in the spatial dynamics of rural areas. However, it is still largely unknown how much such urban areas generate planned development or growth in nearby surroundings, and how such small urban agglomerations attract and diffuse multiple activities in rural areas. This paper discusses the issue of socio-economic feasibility of rural areas from a long-term strategic perspective and proposes a new spatial land-cover accounting methodology to assess the impacts and changes occurring in the rural world, with a particular view to the pulling forces in small towns. Methodologically, this paper applies gravity concepts in combination with GIS to identify the compactness of agricultural areas within different regions of the Algarve and to detect the direction of significance of land-use variations. By means of time series and comparative analyses of different agricultural land, important land use changes can be identified. Copyright © 2012 Inderscience Enterprises Ltd.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)262-271
Number of pages9
JournalInternational Journal of Foresight and Innovation Policy
Issue number2/3
Publication statusPublished - 2012


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