Echelon analysis of the relationship between population and land cover patterns based on remote sensing data.

Kouji Kurihara, Wayne L. Myers, Ganapati P. Patil

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


With continuing proliferation of human influences on landscapes, there is mounting incentive to undertake quantification of relationships between spatial patters of human populations and vegetation. In considering such quantification, it is apparent that investigations must be conducted at different scales and in a comparative manner across regions. At the broader scales it becomes necessary to utilize remote sensing of vegetation for comparative studies against map referenced census data. This paper explores such an approach for the urbanized area in Tokyo vicinity. Vegetation is represented by the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) as determined from data acquired by the thematic mapper (TM) sensor of Landsat satellite. Sparseness of vegetation is analyzed in relation to density of human residence, first by regression analysis involving stratified distance zones and then by recent echelon approach for characterization of surfaces. Echelon reveal structural organization of surfaces in an objective and explicit manner. The virtual surface determined by census data collected on a grid is shown to have structural correspondence with the surface representing vegetation greenness as reflected in magnitude of NDVI values computed from red and infrared bands of image data.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)103-122
Number of pages20
JournalCommunity Ecology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2000


  • Echelon analysis, Human ecological influence, NDVI, Remote sensing, Spatial comparison, Vegetation patterns


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