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Social media, geodiversity and the provision of cultural ecosystem services

Social media, geodiversity and the provision of cultural ecosystem services
Social media, geodiversity and the provision of cultural ecosystem services
To provide a more holistic approach to the conservation of ecosystem services (ES) there is a need to further develop our understanding of how features of biotic and abiotic nature, as well as people and society, interact to provide them. However, the role of geodiversity – the diversity of geology, geomorphology, sediments and soils and hydrology – is overlooked in ES literature and frameworks. Furthermore, geosystem services (GS) – the services that geodiversity provides in isolation of interactions with biotic nature – are also currently underrepresented in ES science.
This thesis will focus on the role of geodiversity in providing cultural ecosystem services (CES), in particular how we interact with geodiversity when undertaking recreational actives. Here, social media datasets from the website Flickr and, for the first time in the field of CES, Reddit are used to assess human-nature interactions through a range of analytical methods including image content analysis, textual sentiment analysis and distribution modelling. The results of these methods contribute to our understanding of both the complex relationship between geodiversity and CES and to the applications of social media data to CES studies.
First, the empirical methods highlight that geodiversity is important at driving both the distribution of CES as well as the positive experience of the activity undertaken. It is demonstrated that geomorphological features, such as topography, and hydrological features, such as coastal waters and lakes, play an important role in determining the distribution and experience of the recreational activity of hiking. The results also highlight the complex relationships between geodiversity and biodiversity features, such as trees and plants, as well as between geodiversity and human-made features, such as trails and roads, in providing CES. The results of these studies can help inform future geoconservation management with the aim of promoting the sustainable use of geodiversity to ensure the future of the ES it provides.
Second, this work advances current uses of social media data by providing novel methods of obtaining data through an accessible R package, photosearcher, as well as informing on the best practice for enriching social media datasets. Furthermore, we investigate Reddit as a novel source of data for CES and demonstrate its usefulness in assessing a range of CES.
It is suggested that future work continues to investigate the role of geodiversity on ES, using both social media data and other analytical methods, to better inform the holistic conservation of ES for now and for future generations.
University of Southampton
Fox, Nathan
e21f7493-4f13-4950-b011-91a16d56bb13
Fox, Nathan
e21f7493-4f13-4950-b011-91a16d56bb13
Parks, Katherine
ea8fc33d-e41f-4df1-9c16-01c1711de5a6

Fox, Nathan (2021) Social media, geodiversity and the provision of cultural ecosystem services. University of Southampton, Doctoral Thesis, 244pp.

Record type: Thesis (Doctoral)

Abstract

To provide a more holistic approach to the conservation of ecosystem services (ES) there is a need to further develop our understanding of how features of biotic and abiotic nature, as well as people and society, interact to provide them. However, the role of geodiversity – the diversity of geology, geomorphology, sediments and soils and hydrology – is overlooked in ES literature and frameworks. Furthermore, geosystem services (GS) – the services that geodiversity provides in isolation of interactions with biotic nature – are also currently underrepresented in ES science.
This thesis will focus on the role of geodiversity in providing cultural ecosystem services (CES), in particular how we interact with geodiversity when undertaking recreational actives. Here, social media datasets from the website Flickr and, for the first time in the field of CES, Reddit are used to assess human-nature interactions through a range of analytical methods including image content analysis, textual sentiment analysis and distribution modelling. The results of these methods contribute to our understanding of both the complex relationship between geodiversity and CES and to the applications of social media data to CES studies.
First, the empirical methods highlight that geodiversity is important at driving both the distribution of CES as well as the positive experience of the activity undertaken. It is demonstrated that geomorphological features, such as topography, and hydrological features, such as coastal waters and lakes, play an important role in determining the distribution and experience of the recreational activity of hiking. The results also highlight the complex relationships between geodiversity and biodiversity features, such as trees and plants, as well as between geodiversity and human-made features, such as trails and roads, in providing CES. The results of these studies can help inform future geoconservation management with the aim of promoting the sustainable use of geodiversity to ensure the future of the ES it provides.
Second, this work advances current uses of social media data by providing novel methods of obtaining data through an accessible R package, photosearcher, as well as informing on the best practice for enriching social media datasets. Furthermore, we investigate Reddit as a novel source of data for CES and demonstrate its usefulness in assessing a range of CES.
It is suggested that future work continues to investigate the role of geodiversity on ES, using both social media data and other analytical methods, to better inform the holistic conservation of ES for now and for future generations.

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More information

Published date: 21 September 2021

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 451503
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/451503
PURE UUID: 91e1ab52-d1cc-4a32-97bc-75d44f818c64

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 04 Oct 2021 16:33
Last modified: 04 Oct 2021 16:33

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Contributors

Author: Nathan Fox
Thesis advisor: Katherine Parks

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