IHDP Knowledge Transfer Database

Land-Use and Land Cover-Change

Acronym: LUCC

Core Project

Open Date:

Close Date:


The project on Land-Use and Cover-Change was an interdisciplinary joint core project of IGBP and IHDP. Following preparatory work in the early 1990s, the project was formalized in 1995 through a Research/Science Plan and got an Implementation Strategy in 1999. The three missions of LUCC were: (a) to build a compendium of information about local land-use and cover dynamics, (b) to identify a (small) number of robust principles that can better knit together local insights into a predictive science, and (c) to foster the development of common (or community) models which may then become widely available to scientists. The human impact on earth is vast and unprecedented. Changes in land cover and land use are among the most important. They are a significant cause, or forcing function, of global change, and the medium through which many human responses to global change will occur; this is an essential component in all considerations of sustainability. Though land change is likely the most ancient of all human-induced environmental impacts on the biosphere, land-change science was one of the last subjects to be formally established by the global environmental-change science community through LUCC.