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Land 2014, 3(3), 598-616; doi:10.3390/land3030598
Article

Assessing the Quality of Agricultural Landscape Change with Multiple Dimensions

1,* , 1
, 2
, 3
 and 4
1 Economic Research, MTT Agrifood Research Finland, Latokartanonkaari 9, 00790 Helsinki, Finland 2 Plant Production Research, MTT Agrifood Research Finland, Datum, Tietotie, 31600 Jokioinen, Finland 3 Economic Research, MTT Agrifood Research Finland, Laboratorium Uutetie 2 A, 31600 Jokioinen, Finland 4 Plant Production Research, MTT Agrifood Research Finland, Eteläranta 55, 96300 Rovaniemi, Finland
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 19 December 2013 / Revised: 18 June 2014 / Accepted: 24 June 2014 / Published: 1 July 2014
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Landscape Perspectives on Environmental Conservation)
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Abstract

Better recognition of public perceptions is called for in developing policies that affect landscape qualities, such as agri-environmental policies. The present study focused on the evaluation of typical agricultural landscapes in Finland. We utilized and operationalized the visual landscape quality scales introduced by Tveit et al. (2006) and further explored how these scales can be applied in citizen evaluation of agricultural landscapes. From landscape data collected via an Internet survey, we analysed whether and how the attributes of agricultural landscapes were linked to their evaluation. The results demonstrated that visual concepts such as openness, naturalness, species richness and the impression of being taken care of were significantly associated with six landscape attributes, i.e., grain, cattle, bales, farmhouses, buses and disturbances. A relationship between key landscape concepts and normative evaluation was found. The normative pleasantness of the landscape also significantly associated with individual landscape attributes and the socio-demographic characteristics of the perceivers.
Keywords: landscape evaluation; landscape attributes; landscape quality scales landscape evaluation; landscape attributes; landscape quality scales
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Pouta, E.; Grammatikopoulou, I.; Hurme, T.; Soini, K.; Uusitalo, M. Assessing the Quality of Agricultural Landscape Change with Multiple Dimensions. Land 2014, 3, 598-616.

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