Overview of the Geographic Advantage

Susan Hanson's (2004) work identified "the geographic advantage" which "communicates the truth that geographers have something to offer that others do not." A geographic approach involves looking at issues and problems using one or more of four geographic advantages distinguishing the investigation from approaches used in other disciplines. Students should understand how geographers view and approach an issue or problem differently than other disciplines. Geographers consider 1) relationships between people and the environment, 2) the importance of spatial variability (the place-dependence of processes), 3) processes operating at multiple and interlocking geographic scales, and 4) the integration of spatial and temporal analysis.

  1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11
Relationships between people and the environment x x x x x x x   x x x
The importance of spatial variability   x x x x x   x x   x
Processes operating at multiple and interlocking geographic scales x   x     x x x      
The integration of spatial and temporal analysis x x x x x x       x  

Relationships between people and the environment

Our planet as well as the people who live on it are constantly changing. Identifying and understanding relationships between people and the environment are critical to designing a sustainable future. This critical aspect is reflected in the fact that 10 of the 11 modules include this geographic advantage as a focus in the geographic investigation.

The importance of spatial variability

Geographers know and understand the importance of spatial variability and the place-dependence of processes. Eight of the modules include this geographic advantage as a focus in the geographic investigation. 

Processes operating at multiple and interlocking geographic scales

Analysis of an issue or problem at different scales may assist geographers in understanding the connections and patterns. For example, interesting shifts in the location of US population may reveal new information when viewed at census tract, community, county, state, or regional scales. Five of the modules include this geographic advantage as a focus in the geographic investigation.

The integration of spatial and temporal analysis

Geographers rely on historical as well as current records to analyze an issue or problem. Additional perspectives can provide a deeper, more accurate analysis of events in both physical and human systems. Seven of the modules include this geographic advantage as a focus in the geographic investigation.

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Alice and Sydney

I am the Geographic Advantage. You can be too.

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http://www.quova.com/what/ip-repository/

Supra-state is a state which governs other states

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