Institut for Biologi

Aarhus Universitets segl

Shuqing Teng

Long-term induced agricultural intensification in China

Publikation: KonferencebidragPosterForskningpeer review

Understanding the dynamics of agricultural intensification has great implications for biodiversity conservation faced with increasing human population and food demand. How agricultural intensification evolves with human population growth is differently described by three theories, namely, the Boserupian, Malthusian and induced intensification theories. The Malthusian theory suggests quick adoption of available techniques that increase human population, while the other two share one viewpoint that increased intensive level of agriculture is passively induced by population growth. Which theory has a prediction that matches long-term dynamics of agricultural intensification in history? Using historical land-use data spanning two thousand years, this study estimated the dynamic trajectories of four cultivation practices with different intensive levels in a part of China and assessed the three theories by comparing the empirical dynamics with their predictions. We found that the long-term land-use dynamics in China were consistent with an induced intensification pathway, in line with both the Boserupian and induced intensification theories, but not with the Malthusian theory. Further differentiation between the two theories requires extra historical socio-economic information that can test for involution and/or Malthusian checks.
Udgivelsesår7 maj 2016
Antal sider1
StatusUdgivet - 7 maj 2016

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