The Problem

The public attention to agricultural land use and the economic, social, and ecological outcomes has never been higher, and agroecosystems at the local and regional scales are experiencing dramatic biophysical, socio-economic, and political changes. In response, a number of community leaders and scholars have started to ask: how can local communities maintain self-determination in light of large scale biophysical, political, and economic climate change pressures? In what ways can we find economic, social, and environmental wins that improve the performance of landscapes for everyone?

Watch a narrated video exploring Collaborative Geodesign.

Collaborative Geodesign helps find solutions

Collaborative geodesign is a process that allows groups of diverse stakeholders to “try-on” various landscape designs assisted by a geodesign tool. The tool provides quantitative feedback on multiple biophysical and social indicators. The goal is to empower stakeholders to assess what landscape designs could meet the demands of a new bio-based economy without sacrificing local and regional scale concerns. Preliminary evidence suggests that local communities can generate high quality, adaptive landscape designs, and that groups move through an iterative design process similar to professionals. Future work will continue to consider to what extent collaborative geodesign provides a means for local communities to generate designs that meet cross-scale economic and political climate change goals.

Try the Tools

Over the past five years, the geodesign tools have gone through multiple iterations and now cover three different geographies. Try each of the most recent tool for three different geographies below:

  1. Collaborative geodesign application for Seven Mile Creek watershed, Minnesota (link to application)
  2. Collaborative geodesign application for areas of Middle Cedar watershed, Iowa (link to application)
  3. Geodesign application for modeling impact of landscape change on nitrate loading in a portion of the Le Sueur watershed, Minnesota (link to application)

Learn more

can Collaborative Geodesign help you?

Do you want to learn more, or do you have a problem collaborative geodesign can help you explore? Contact Len Kne at University of Minnesota U-Spatial.