Utilising spatial technologies to support the catchment based approach to landscape management

Taigel, Sarah (2016) Utilising spatial technologies to support the catchment based approach to landscape management. Doctoral thesis, University of East Anglia.

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Much of the UK’s water environment is degraded due to centuries of intensive land management. Driven by the combined pressures of EU targets for water quality, climate change, urbanisation, and population growth the requirement for better management of water resources has led to the adoption of catchment scale management. Despite fewer funding opportunities available to catchment organisations government expectations remain high. Spatial technologies have much to offer to aid collaboration between catchment organisations and stakeholders in their aims to improve the water environment, but research evaluating the application of low cost spatial technologies to support the Catchment Based Approach within the UK has to date been limited. Through three case studies this thesis explored how spatial technologies could support the development of future sustainable and multifunctional river catchment landscapes. The methodology of each case study retained a practitioner focus and evaluated both practitioner interaction with the technologies and the technology development itself. The research examined the strengths and weaknesses of spatial technology in practice and identified barriers to wider adoption by the catchment partnerships and rivers trusts. Results indicate untapped potential for spatial technologies to support the Catchment Based Approach (CaBA) but three barriers to adoption exist. First, there are technological restrictions which need to be overcome with further development. Secondly, significant resources are required, and thirdly, the disruptive influence of technology on institutional structure must be accommodated. Even with the suggested further development the spatial technologies evaluated in this thesis remain outside of the scope of many catchment institutions in terms of skill, understanding of best practice and the resources to support implementation. The future of our water environment and the wider landscape is constrained not by those carrying out the work but the lack of funds and governance frameworks for catchment institutions to work together.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Science > School of Environmental Sciences
Depositing User: Jackie Webb
Date Deposited: 07 Jun 2016 09:18
Last Modified: 07 Jun 2016 09:18
URI: https://ueaeprints.uea.ac.uk/id/eprint/59246


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