This volume is the result of an invited symposium titled "Integrated Land-Use and Environmental Models: A Survey of Current Applications and Research" that was held in October 2000 at Arizona State University. The idea for the symposium arose from a belief held by many academics that we are at the watershed of a new generation of models that are more dynamic, more pragmatic, more interdiscipli nary, and more amenable to collaborative decision making. Several academics and professionals engaged in urban research had long realized that domain-specific knowledge was inadequate for understanding and managing urban growth. While interdisciplinary approaches have become critical in most social research, one general area of knowledge that stands out as having the most wide-ranging impact on current urban modeling efforts is the field comprised of environmental sciences and ecology. The symposium offered a forum for academics and professionals engaged in urban and ecological modeling to exchange ideas and experiences, specifically in areas that overlapped urban and environmental issues. The contri butions to this volume highlight the progress made in the various efforts to build integrated urban and environmental models. More importantly, each chapter shows how ideas have diffused across disciplinary boundaries to create better policy-relevant models. In addition, this book outlines some promising areas of research that could make important contributions to the field of urban and envi ronmental modeling. Integrated thinking about urban and environmental issues has been fundamental to the concept of sustainability.
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The authors of this volume follow four interrelated themes. In the first section "Evolving Definitions - Changing Practices" the fundamental shifts in urban modeling practices are examined in relation to the new theoretical and computational advances in the field. The second section "Ecologic Processes and their Land Use Implications" provides current examples of ecological models that influence land use policy and planning. "Visualization, Representation and Communication" deals exclusively with the science and art of geographic data generation and representation techniques. Finally the section on "Socioeconomic Implications of Transportation and Land Use" examines the traditional domain of urban models from a sociological and environmental perspective and offers new insights on transportation planning.
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