Landscape as a Geosystem



This is the core chapter of the book dealing with the theoretical principles of the geosystems. Defines the topical and choric models of geosystems, as well as the simplified model of the geocomplexes. There is explained the difference between state variables and typological characteristics of the elements of geosystems. Specific respect is given to the definition of the structures of the landscape. According to the genesis, physical character of the elements and according to the relation of structures to their role and management in planning processes we divide the landscape as geosystem to three substructures. Primary landscape structure is a set of material elements of the landscape and their relations that constitute the original and permanent foundation for other structures. These elements are mainly the elements of the abiotic sphere—the geological base and subsoils, soils, waters, georelief, air. Secondary landscape structure is constituted by human-influenced, reshaped and created material landscape elements that currently cover the Earth’s surface. These are the elements of land use, real biota, man-made objects and constructions. Tertiary (socio-economic) landscape structure is a set intangible (non-material) socio-economic factors/phenomena displayed to the landscape space as interests, manifestations and consequences of the activities of individual sectors that are relevant to landscape. These are the protection and other functional zones of nature and natural resources protection, hygienic and safety zones of industrial and infrastructure objects, zones of declared zones of specific environmental measures, administrative boundaries, etc. Finally, the chapter gives the geosystem definition of the landscape and its reflection in the law in Slovakia. This definition reeds: “Landscape is a complex system of space, location, georelief and other mutually, functionally interconnected material natural elements and elements modified and created by a man, in particular the geological base and soil creating substratum, soil, water bodies, air, flora and fauna, artificial structures and the elements of land use, as well as their connections, which determine also the socio-economic factors related to landscape. Landscape is the environment of man and other living organisms.” The chapter is illustrated by figures and graphics explaining the structure of the geosystem.


Geosystem Geocomplex Elements Primary landscape structure Secondary landscape structure Tertiary landscape structure 


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© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.UNESCO-Chair for Sustainable DevelopmentTechnical University in ZvolenZvolenSlovakia
  2. 2.Institute of Landscape Ecology SASBratislavaSlovakia
  3. 3.ESPRIT Ltd.Banská ŠtiavnicaSlovakia

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