A telescopic/microscopic view of the landscape provides a mosaic of patches (isolated and connected) that form a complex network of elements constituting our 20th-century landscape. The fragmentation of science and the proliferation of management policies indicative of the 20th century must be replaced by integrated approaches during the 21st century if societies are to achieve the goal of sustainable societies and to protect biotic diversity at regional and global scales. Lubchenco et al. (1991) outlined a research initiative necessary to establish a sustainable biosphere initiative (SBI) at greater scales. Programs or initiatives, such as the SBI, should focus on the landscape level (including human settlements) with special attention directed to protecting and restoring the integrity of ecosystem and landscape processes and to conserving biotic diversity. Only with long-term land-use planning can humans hope to protect and restore sustainable landscapes for future generations.
An agro-urban landscape perspective is important for ecologically self-sufficient and economically cost-effective management of agricultural systems. Management decisions based on this perspective should be aimed at achieving sustainability of the total landscape. We define sustainability in energetic terms in which primary productivity of the total landscape is in balance with community maintenance (i.e., P/R = 1). To achieve such a landscape sustainability, the rural autotrophic landscape (P > R) must balance the heterotrophic urban-suburban landscape (P < R). Biotic and cultural diversity must be maintained within these systems to protect and/or conserve regulatory feedback mechanisms (Barrett et al., 1997).
Because it is a difficult task to determine optimal land use, the development of appropriate management strategies at the agro-urban level will require the cooperation of diverse fields of study. The political, social, artistic, and economic components must become integrated with ecological theory in order to optimize land-use planning and, consequently, determine the landscape mosaic for the 21st century (Barrett and Peles, 1994). The integration of the ecological, cultural, and historical spheres of knowledge should generate new theories and methodologies necessary for the appropriate management of these agrolandscapes. The coupling of theory with practice must become an integral part of this integrative planning and management strategy.
The human process of orientation by another can have a significant influence on what human beings perceive as a resource and a nonresource and, consequently, on how humans view the total landscape. What people consider a resource changes with purpose or intent while negotiating their environment (Hunt, 1992). This perception, in turn, changes the status of other resources. For example, humans increasingly must combine ecological "capital" with economic "capital" (dual capitalism) in order to manage these systems and landscapes best for future generations.
The integration of the agricultural, urban, and natural landscapes, landscapes that transcend cultural (i.e., intragenerational) and historical (i.e., intergenerational) boundaries, must be more fully understood in order to optimize biological and landscape diversity. Linking an increasing number of diverse cultural and historical perspectives with the future design of the total landscape, through dialogue, changes the pattern of our understanding of landscapes. As Nassauer (1995) notes, changing perceptions change the landscape. The role of biodiversity in total landscapes, viewed and researched based on this perspective, can best be managed within this continuing dialogue.
Future generations will require this type of mutualistic behavior and transdisci-plinary cooperation to manage increasingly complex regional and global landscapes. Maintaining biodiversity is paramount to the sustainability (health) of our planet and is by necessity transgenerational.
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