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ISPRS Int. J. Geo-Inf. 2017, 6(12), 396; doi:10.3390/ijgi6120396

Land-Use Suitability in Northeast Iran: Application of AHP-GIS Hybrid Model

1
Department of Agroecology, Faculty of Agriculture, Azad University of Mashhad, 9187864584 Mashhad, Iran
2
Department of Geography, Ghent University, B-9000 Ghent, Belgium
3
Economics and Rural Development, Gembloux Agro-Bio Tech, University of Liege, B-4000 Liege, Belgium
4
College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Faculty of Agricultural Economics and Development, Department of Agricultural Management and Development, University of Tehran, 1417466191 Tehran, Iran
5
Faculty of Applied Economics, Department of Engineering Management, University of Antwerp, Prinsstraat 13, B-2000 Antwerp, Belgium
6
Centre for Environmental Sciences, Hasselt University, Martelarenlaan 42, B-3500 Hasselt, Belgium
7
College of Civil Aviation, Nanjing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics (NUAA), Nanjing 210016, China
8
Department of Geography, University of Tartu, 21014 Tartu, Estonia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 5 October 2017 / Revised: 20 November 2017 / Accepted: 22 November 2017 / Published: 1 December 2017
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Abstract

Land-use suitability is the ability of a given type of land to support a defined use. Analysis of land-use suitability requires the consideration of a variety of criteria, not only the natural/physical capacity of a land unit, but also its socioeconomic and environmental impact implications. As land suitability is assessed within a Geographic Information System (GIS) environment, it is formulated as a multi-criteria decision making (MCDM) problem. The study was conducted in the Sangab Plain in northeast Iran. We investigated the study area’s suitability for grassland and agricultural uses. A hybrid method of the analytic hierarchy process (AHP) and GIS methodology was applied to evaluate land suitability based on a set of criteria and sub-criteria. Results showed that 20% of the study area had high (rich), 65% had medium (fair), and 15% had low (poor) suitability for agriculture. In terms of grassland use, the comparable amounts were, respectively, about 7%, 23%, and 70%. The lands of the Sangab Plain have medium potential for agricultural use and low potential for grassland use. This paper used both qualitative and quantitative techniques. View Full-Text
Keywords: land suitability; AHP-GIS hybrid method; agricultural land uses; grassland uses; Sangab Plain land suitability; AHP-GIS hybrid method; agricultural land uses; grassland uses; Sangab Plain
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Memarbashi, E.; Azadi, H.; Barati, A.A.; Mohajeri, F.; Passel, S.V.; Witlox, F. Land-Use Suitability in Northeast Iran: Application of AHP-GIS Hybrid Model. ISPRS Int. J. Geo-Inf. 2017, 6, 396.

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