The introduction of geography today Essay

1. Introduction

“Today Geography is an highly diverse subject covering several countries of survey and affecting researches with different backgrounds from all over the universe ( Algona & A ; Marsh, 2003 ) ” . Thus Geography is a subject that has evolved through clip. Since the beginning of this subject, it was regarded as a survey for mapping characteristics, nevertheless the definition subsequently expanded. Geography is once more, a multidisciplinary topic that is divided into a figure of sub-fields. Harmonizing to Hughes ( 1863 ) , “Traditionally, Geography every bit good as geographers has been viewed as the same as mapmaking and people who study topographic point names. As infinite and topographic point affect a assortment of subjects such as economic sciences, wellness, clime, workss and animate beings, Geography is extremely interdisciplinary” .

“While Geography has followed about all 19th and twentieth Century societal and biophysical scientific disciplines along the reductionist path, we have, in my position, tried to maintain an oculus on the “big picture” better than most. We have been criticised for this holistic ( and traditionally instead Renaissance man ) attack by other subjects because comprehensiveness across a scope of subjects tends to necessitate a slightly less deep grasp of any one subject ( Pitman, 2005, p.137 ) ” . Therefore there is a demand to spread out the subject in footings of farther research but maintain it within its context ( that is. , within the spacial scientific discipline ) . Hence, there were alterations that were encountered such as understanding the Earth System Science in a holistic attack instead than stand in plunging it and with the development of computing machines Geographic Information Systems. Pitman ( 2005, p.140 ) stated that, “Earth System Science is deriving considerable momentum” . Thus it can be developed within geographics as the two are related in footings of the biophysical facets.

We will write a custom essay sample on
The introduction of geography today Essay
or any similar topic only for you
Order now

Geography is non wholly included as a subject that can help in lending to this new scientific discipline that is deriving impulse. Pitman ( 2005, p.140 ) argues that “the international scientific community has developed Earth System Science with small mention to the Geography community” . The function that geographics has to offer in the subject of Earth System Science remains extremely ignored.

The purpose of this paper is to analyze and measure the alteration in way within the subject of Geography towards Earth System Science. To derive penetration to this affair, this paper will therefore, specify Geography, outline the history of Geography as a subject and besides specify Earth System Science, set up a relationship between Geography and Earth System Science, assess the alteration of Geography towards Earth System Science and in conclusion the decision.

2. The definition of Geography

2.1. What is Geography?

Geography is defined as the survey of spacial phenomena and the interaction between society and nature accordingly depicting and explicating the spacial forms and procedures. It hence, surveies the lands description, population and incidents of the Earth. Geography is therefore a survey of spacial scientific discipline. Harmonizing to the online, “geography is the scientific discipline covering with the areal distinction of the Earth ‘s surface… agreement and its interrelatednesss over the universe of such elements as clime, lift, dirt, flora, population, land usage, industries, or provinces, and of the unit countries formed by the composite of these single elements” . It farther defines geographics as “the scientific discipline of topographic point, that is, the survey of the surface of the Earth, the locations and distribution of its physical and cultural characteristics, the areal patterns or topographic points that they form, and the interrelatedness of these characteristics as they affect humans” .

Hence geographics can be divided into two chief subfields, viz. , Human and Physical Geography. However, there is a 3rd subfield known as Environmental Geography that focuses on how worlds affect the environment through their activities and ways of pull offing the environment ( in other words, ways of conserving the environment from being depleted ) . For the intent of this assignment, merely Human and Physical Geography will be discussed.

2.1.1. Human Geography

Narsh ( 2003, p.30 ) describes Human Geography as a “ … survey of human activities on the Earth surface” . Indeed Human Geography surveies the human activities, how they have change the Earth surface, how they affect it and how the procedures of the Earth such as clime affect human activities or productiveness. Human Geography is farther divided into Urban Geography, Economic Geography, Population Geography, Cultural Geography and Political Geography to call a few. Therefore people ( geographers ) who specialise in Human Geography usually concentrate on one facet of the subfields. However, two or more subfields can be studied at the same time in a research undertaking to heighten the apprehension of the spacial scientific discipline.

2.1.2. Physical Geography

Harmonizing to Ernst ( 2000 ) , “Physical Geography is a subject for those that are concern with the critical affair of the environmental quality” . Hence Physical Geography is chiefly concern about the landforms, temperature, dirts and clime, how these factors influence the dwellers in footings of their construction and properties. Hughes ( 1863 ) describes Physical Geography as a survey “ … which concerns the Earth ‘s physical environment ( the ambiance, biosphere, hydrosphere, and lithosphere ) ” .

“Physical geographics besides surveies the interrelatednesss of these phenomena to human. This country of geographics has seen really intense involvement and growing in the last decennaries because of the acceleration of homo induced environmental debasement. Therefore, physical geographics ‘s range is much broader than the simple spacial survey of nature. It besides involves the probe of how worlds are act uponing nature ( Pidwirny, 2006 ) ” . Hence the accent that physical geographics is concerned with the importance of environmental worth.

Physical Geography can hence be subdivided into the undermentioned: Geomorphology, Climatology, and Environmental Geography to call a few. Physical Geography is regarded as the footing for Earth System Science since these Fieldss surveies the Earth surface and its procedures. As a consequence, Earth System Science is viewed as the modern physical geographics.

2.2. Geography as a subject

Geography has contributed to the scientific discipline field by agencies of publications and application of certain methodological analysiss in work outing jobs that are associated with the spacial phenomena. It is considered as a Science topic because it uses the scientific method as footing of the research undertakings within the subject. Like any other academic subject, geographics has the undermentioned facets:

  • Institutionalisation, intending that it is identified by the fact that it is taught in universities ;
  • Professionalism, geographics is being practiced by people who are qualified in the field of geographics as a consequence they become expects in this field ;
  • Original research and printing the findings
  • Has organic structures to advance the subject Conferences, seminars, diaries and publications
  • Conferences, seminars, diaries and publications that contribute the academic subject. The publications and diaries provide penetrations as to what has been studied in the yesteryear and how to progress the cognition within this subject. Conferences and seminars are a platform to discourse the arising affairs and happening the solution to it.

Having inspected geographics as a subject it will be critical to set up the history of geographics as a subject, how it started and the hereafter that it holds as new finds are made. Therefore, ensuing in new focal point for the subject such as the Earth System Science that geographics is altering towards it. This is discussed in the following subdivision of the paper.

3. History of Geography

Geography as a subject has a long history that can be dated back Before Christ ( BC ) , whereby geographics became a separate field of survey. ‘The widely recognized end of geographics is given by the etymology of its name depicting the Earth. Harmonizing to Johnston ( 199, p.139 ) , this has lineage of established legion capable history ( which the writer distinguishes from disciplinary histories, reserving the latter term for studies of academic subject as practised in universities and comparable constitution ) ‘ . Hence geographics has developed and has become institutionalized which is one of the features of an academic subject.

“The chief laminitiss of geographics can be traced to the antediluvian civilizations, such as the Greeks, who were the first to research geographics as both art and scientific discipline, and this might hold been through different attacks including mapmaking, doctrine, literature and mathematics. Throughout the in-between ages, the autumn of the Roman Empire led to a displacement in the development of geographics from Europe to the Islamic universe ( Baker, 1963 ) ” .

“The 16th and the seventeenth century are considered as the age of find where many new lands were discovered and had subscribers such as Christopher Columbus, Marco Polo and James cook, review a desire for both accurate geographic item and more solid theoretical laminitiss ( Baker, 1963 ) ” .

“Geography became recognised as a distinct academic subject during the 18th and the 19th centuries and became portion of a typical university course of study in Europe, particularly France and Germany. Over the past two centuries the promotion in engineering such as computing machines has led to a development of geomatic and new practises such as participant observation and geostatistics being incorporated into geographics ‘s portfolio of tools ( Baker, 1963 ) ” . The geographics topic started to be taught in primary schools as a tool for listing and appellative topographic points, hence, progressed to the phase that it is now offered at higher establishments ( universities ) as a spacial scientific discipline topic.

Throughout the history of Geography as a subject it can be established that since the early ages of geographics, it explored the spacial scientific discipline of worlds and its physical content.

4. The definition of Earth System Science

Earth is a many-sided and full of life entity that includes the disciplinary circuits for lithosphere, atmosphere, hydrosphere and life signifiers as a consequence there is no procedure that takes topographic point in entire isolation within the system. Pitman ( 2005, p.138-9 ) defines Earth System Science as “ … the survey of the Earth as a individual incorporate physical and societal system. Earth System Science views the Earth-System holistically based on the new apprehension of the procedures, non-linearities and feedbacks which dominate the system and contribute to emergent phenomenon” . A clear and concise definition comes from ESSP ( 1997 ) which states that “Earth System Science is the survey of the Earth System, with accent on detecting, understanding and foretelling planetary environmental alterations affecting interactions between land, atmosphere, H2O, ice, biosphere, societies, engineerings and economies” . Hence, Earth System Science involves a figure of subjects, such as Geology, Geography, Meteorology, Environmental Sciences, Energy and Economic surveies. The construction of Earth System Science is illustrated in figure 1.

Harmonizing to Johnston ( 2005, p.7 ) , the focal point of Pitman ‘s concern is the outgrowth of a new subject called Earth system scientific disciplines which he footings ‘a re-invention of Geography ‘ . “Earth system scientific disciplines study the operation of and interactions between worlds, ( including population alteration, economic growing, societal alteration and biophysical systems, oceans, cryosphere and ecology ) via biogeochemical rhythms ( Johnston, 2005, p.8 ) ” .

“Earth system scientific disciplines is presented as of import because is ‘genuinely four dimensional ‘ though the significance of the phrase is far from clear. Another Australian writer has late described this as ‘environmental scientific discipline ‘ ( Wasson, 2004 ) as cited by Johnston ( 2005, p.8 ) ” . Earth system scientific disciplines have impacts on other subjects such as psychological science, neuroscience and instruction and noteworthy characteristic of these mentions is a scope and integrating of different countries. It is really hard to give a precise definition of Earth system sciences as it brings a wide scope of subjects and allows them to interact ( Ernst, 2000, p.520 ) ” .

“In certain extents, Earth systems scientific disciplines has simple taken the mantle of systems based on physical geographics. This perceptual experience of specifying Earth system scientific disciplines may hold spread more widely, as noted by the undermentioned writer who is based in the section of Geological and Environmental scientific disciplines at Stanford University: Earth system scientific disciplines is really 21st century geographics that encompasses the survey of environmental physical and life scientific disciplines and technology, coupled with analysis of human concepts and political and economical policies. It employs infinite age engineerings to place, step, and manage diverse planetary databases that serve as a model and foundation for coherent subject ( Ernst, 2000, p.520 ) ” . As a consequence physical geographics is considered to be the nucleus subject for Earth System Science.

5. The relationship between Geography as a subject and Earth System Science

Geography and Earth System Science both seek to understand the importance of the environment and how worlds affect it. The 21th century is extremely affected by the human activities that result in the pollution of the ambiance, lithosphere and hydrosphere which in some cases have resulted in clime alteration. Pitman ( 2005 ) reexamine Earth system sciences as a individual, incorporate physical and societal system. “Earth system scientific disciplines have non been built-in. This is due to the fact that specialisation in physical geographics, as far back as Davis ( 1901 ) , tended to promote the same reductionist attack common in our associated subjects, within which we strive to be respected. With alterations that had occurred in the environment, we now know that any impression that a individual portion of the Earth system can be to the full understood in isolation from other parts, or the component that might be within the kingdom of physical Geography can be understood without an grasp of the function of worlds, is inexperienced ( Pitman, 2005, p140 ) ” .

“Significant affair of the environmental quality can be exactly defined by Physical geographics as a nucleus subject. Physical geographics defines the construction and character of the local and planetary home ground which includes characteristics such as landforms, temperature, dirts, and climatic conditions. It besides observes the manner in which those physical factors determine the form of tenancy by populating systems that is ; it seeks accounts for the development, through the interactions, of ecosystems. In contrast, it attempts to explicate how worlds have settled on the land and have used it. Dressed up in a more modern name, Physical geographics is Earth system scientific disciplines ( Kennedy, 2000, p13 ) ” .

‘It is singular that Geographers have been at the front place of appraisals of the graduated table of land screen alteration holding a major part by our subject. It is now realised that looking at how the biophysical system works without including Worlds at the nucleus of any mathematical or conceptual theoretical account of that system is inexperienced. This has clearly been recognised by the International Geosphere Biosphere Program. The cardinal function that Humans play in all facets of modern Earth System Science was highlighted by Schellnhuber ( 1999 ) , the manager of the Potsdam Institute in Germany ( Pitman, 2005, p.141 ) ‘ .

‘Incorporation of Earth system scientific disciplines in Physical geographics can play a major function in clear uping many uncertainnesss refering the environment via observation of the operation of the biophysical system, and by supplying the clime patterning groups with cognition on the spacial distribution key measures, such as dirt and flora type. Climate patterning groups can besides be assisted to understand how biophysical procedures of the universe ( Pitman, 2005, p.141 ) ‘ .

‘Physical geographics with Earth system scientific disciplines can be applied in the general country of quaternate surveies which include work on the Reconstruction of paleogeography. This can besides assist to understand clime variableness or the likely medium of planetary clime to an external disturbance to measure whether planetary temperatures in the last decennary have been anomalous and whether the rate of planetary heating is anomous ( Pitman, 2005, p.141 ) ‘ .

6. Measuring the alteration with the subject of Geography towards Earth System Science

“The internal construction of the academic subject of Geography has been debated late, with some contending that it is fragmented while others counter that it is non… ( Johnston, 1998, p.139 ) ” . Earth System scientific discipline within the geographics subject is regarded as a menace to the nucleus of this subject, nevertheless, there is a relationship in Earth System Science and Geography through the subdiscipline called physical geographics. There have bing efforts in the yesteryear to promote Earth System Science of which today is doing contention within this subject. Thus Pitman ( 2005, p.138 ) acknowledge the fact that there has been efforts to incorporate geographics with Earth System Science ; as a consequence he states that “some of these efforts are cardinal to the full subject of Physical Geography. Mentioning Davis ( 1901 ) who argued the demand “to see the signifier of the Earth as a whole” , and Strahler ( 1951 ) who argued that while concentrating on a chosen forte, a Physical Geography should be able to “assemble and incorporate pertinent fragments of cognition into a incorporate image… ” . Chorley et Al. ( 1984 ) used cognition of geology, chemical science, biological science, hydrology, atmospheric and cryospheric procedures, integrated in a systems model to progress geomorphic cognition. These, and really many others, were seminal plants that made Physical Geography a sound subject, while integrative and outwards looking to Human Geography. However, it is merely incontestable that the new push in Earth System Science is mostly independent of Geography” . As an academic subject geographics should lend towards the scientific cognition and should be integrated with other Fieldss if possible to set up solutions that are endangering the society as geographics is a spacial scientific discipline and is concern about the environment without impacting the nucleus of physical geographics.

“Instead, my focal point is that Geography could do a major part to Earth System Science by taking the international docket. Persons within Geography with expertness across cardinal constituents of Physical and Human Geography have the accomplishments to lend solutions to the jobs built-in in this new scientific discipline. It is my position that Geography has, to day of the month, missed these alterations and that this inquiries the relevancy of the subject in the eyes of the broader scientific community ( Pitman, 2005, p.138 ) ” .

Harmonizing to Castree et al. , “The inquiry that arise from incorporating Earth system scientific discipline as a subject in Geography is as geographers, should we be involved in this duologue, or have we already missed the boat on which it is taking topographic point? . Earth system scientific disciplines are linked in the link of the physical and human universes, which was the traditional definition of the subject, despite such subsequent impetus. In footings of surveies of applied environmental alteration, few geographers would differ with Bretherton ‘s decision that ‘ ( vitamin D ) dashing though these undertakings may be, they are matched by the significance of the end. Human-kind is pressing on its environment in unprecedented ways, and we do non understand the deductions. We must seek, for we may non hold a 2nd chance ‘ ( Bretherton, 1993 ; p. 1127 ) . The development of Earth system scientific discipline position would besides talk an attack utilizing constructs of globalization as discussed by Davies ( 2004 ) ” .

7. Decision

Geography as a subject should be traveling towards Earth System Science due to the fact that geographics is multidisciplinary and it surveies nature quality in a signifier of physical geographics. Although Pitman ( 2005, p.146 ) argues that “earth system scientific discipline has invaded geographers academic district, developing an apprehension of the biophysical system with small mention to Physical Geography” , Johnston ( 2005, p.8 ) in bend agrees that geographics should be altering towards Earth System Science. He states that, “we are a natural subject to encompass the truly multidisciplinary scientific discipline that is Earth System Science. We of course view the Earth as a combination of biophysical and societal scientific disciplines. Yet other subjects that actively embraced the reductionist attack through the twentieth Century have now discovered the demand for more holistic position… If Geography does non take leading in this sphere, it will non be long before other subjects to the full take this chance from us and Earth System Science will go on to develop in parallel with geography-at our disbursal… ”

“It is difficult to conceive of a more of import subject than Earth System Science. We desperately need to pass our thought and re-equip our establishments to let this important new scientific discipline to boom ( Lawton, 2001 ) ” . Physical geographics is considered to be a weak sub-discipline of geographics as compared to human geographics. As a consequence altering toward Earth System scientific discipline will help in regenerating this subject.

8. Mentions

Algona, P.S. & A ; M. Marsh. 2003. How to Fix for the AP Human Geography Exam. Library Congress: New York.

Barron, A.P. 2008. Human Geography. ( 2nd Ed. ) . Barron ‘s: New York.

Castree, N. , Demeritt D. , Liverman D. & A ; B. Rhoads. 2009. A Companion to Environmenta Geography. Wiley: United Kingdom

Ernst, W.G. 2000. Earth Systems: Procedure and Issues. Cambridge: United Kingdom. 2009. Geography. hypertext transfer protocol: // Accessed 03 March 2010.

Earth System Science Partnership ( ESSP ) hypertext transfer protocol: // what is earth system scientific discipline

Hughes, W. 1863. Introduction to Geography. hypertext transfer protocol: // Accessed 03 March 2010.

Johnson, D.R. , M. Ruzek & A ; M. Kalb. 2000. Earth System Science and the Internet. Computers and Geosciences, 26 ( 6 ) , 669-676.

Johnston, R.J. 1998. Atomization around a defended Core: the Territoriality of Geography. The Geographical Journal, 164 ( 2 ) , 139-147.

Johnston, R. 2005. Geography ( or geographers ) and earth system scientific discipline. Geoforum 37, 7-11.

Lawton, J. 2001. Earth System Science. Science, 292 ( 5524 ) , 1965.

Pitman, A.J. 2005: Critical Review On the function of Geography in Earth System Science. Geoforum, 36, 137-148.

Pidwirny, M. 2006. Introduction to Geography: Fundamentalss of Physical Geography. ( 2nd Ed ) . hypertext transfer protocol: // Accessed 05 March 2010.


Hi there, would you like to get such a paper? How about receiving a customized one? Check it out