Geography Education
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Geography Education
Supporting geography educators everywhere with current digital resources.
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Analysis Finds 3x More Farmers’ Markets in Areas with the Lowest Obesity Rates

Analysis Finds 3x More Farmers’ Markets in Areas with the Lowest Obesity Rates | Geography Education |
An independent analysis conducted by mapping analytics firm PetersonGIS shows that locations with the highest obesity rates contain the fewest farmers’ markets.


Agricultural production has become a big business, not only in total dollars, but in the scale of production.  In the last 50 years, the rise of 'agribusiness' has dominated the food industry and has redefined how food is produced.  In reaction to this, farmers' markets and organic farming is enjoying success within select demographic groups...and this study shows some of the results of that linkage.

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FARM-Africa Cassava project

A short film showing the work of FARM-Africa's Maendeleo Agricultural Technology Fund (MATF) in Uganda. The National Farmers Union (NFU) is working with FARM...


The Green Revolution is (belatedly) impacting Africa.  Notice the cultural environment within which agriculture takes place here.   What are the gendered differences in the production of food?  What impact does that have on society?

Matt Mallinson's comment, November 5, 2012 2:29 PM
Wow not just the men in the video are working this hard, but women and children as well. It makes you think how much we have as Americans and how much we take everything for granted. These African people are tough, they have to do so much more to survive than we do.
Elizabeth Allen's comment, November 7, 2012 10:46 AM
This video helps us to see the innovative ways African farmers use Cassava. Cassava is a market crop that many African people are dependent on. They know in order to achieve an income from the crop they need to market it in different varieties, for example- to turn it in to flour. Cassava is labor intensive crop that can take up to a year to be at it's full potential, but the people, women and children included, know that they need to tend to the crop in every stage to insure its success. With the income from the crop, families are able to send their children to school.
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Agriculture and Rural Development Day UN Climate Talks

Agriculture and Rural Development Day UN Climate Talks | Geography Education |
Farmers are at the forefront of dealing with climate change around the world. How are they coping, and what opportunities do the shifts present?


An excellent set resources discussing the plight of farmers various regional and ecological situations.  From the famers in Mozambique impacted by unreliable rainfall to Guyana farmers at risk from rising sea fells, climate change is impacting the most vulnerable (and the least responsible) the hardest.  

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Guardian: Thailand flooding threatens Bangkok

Guardian: Thailand flooding threatens Bangkok | Geography Education |
Prime minister Yingluck Shinawatra warns population to expect floods as rising waters reach capital city...

Geographic ironies....some struggle in drought while others have more water than their lands can handle. 

Cam E's curator insight, April 8, 2014 12:34 PM

Another image gallery! This one showcases the Thailand flooding. I found the first picture immediately interesting in that the highway signs are identical to our ones over here, save the difference of language. There's also just as much play as their is damage here. Many pictures show children and even older people taking the time to play around in the sudden water that floods into their city. In countries where flooding is a matter of "when" rather than "if," the citizens are often more prepared and take a less frantic approach as they know what to do. That being said, it is more rare of flooding to hit Bangkok than many other places in Thailand, so this did cause some serious disaster.

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World population nears 7 billion: Can we handle it?

World population nears 7 billion: Can we handle it? | Geography Education |
She's a 40-year-old mother of eight, with a ninth child due soon. The family homestead in a Burundi village is too small to provide enough food, and three of the children have quit school for lack of money to pay required fees.


Here are some more perspectives on demographics, climbing population totals and the consequences and realities of these numbers. 

Lisa Fonseca's comment, October 19, 2011 5:46 PM
I do not believe we can continue to increase drastically in population and handle it. Natural resources eventually end. Agriculturally we may be able to grow crops and food but eventually that too will come to a shortage. With an increase in population we increase in levels of pollution in the air, soil, and water. Inadequate water supply for drinking and sewage is another problem we could face. Just overall we would increase in higher levels of poverty because the shortage of jobs would continue to increase. This would lead to an abundance of things such an malnutrition, starvation, increase in homeless population and so much more.
Seth Dixon's comment, October 21, 2011 1:01 PM
Back the Nepal forest video, sustainability of resource consumption is the key. There are complications with population growth no doubt...but which are the CULTURAL issues surrounding population growth?
Samantha Johns's curator insight, September 10, 2014 9:14 AM

I believe if the world keeps producing offspring like this that we will soon be overpopulated.  There is only a limited  amount of resources and with the high birth rate and lower death rate we will soon have nothing at all.  The soon to be 7 billion people on this earth will only produce more, and with more means less food and natural resources.

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If the world’s population lived in one city…

If the world’s population lived in one city… | Geography Education |

This is an very intriguing map that shows different urban layouts and applies the concept of population density at the city scale and compares it to the global population.  What is everyone lived in the city of New York (at New York's population density)?  How big would that city be? 

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The Ambiguous Triumph of the “Urban Age”

The Ambiguous Triumph of the “Urban Age” | Geography Education |

"At the very moment when urban population has been reported to surpass the rural, this distinction has lost most of its significance, at least in many parts of the affluent world. Two hundred years ago, before automobiles, telephones, the internet and express package services, cities were much more compact and rural life was indeed very different from urban life. Most inhabitants of rural areas were tied to agriculture or industries devoted to the extraction of natural resources. Their lives were fundamentally different from those of urban dwellers."

Matthew DiLuglio's curator insight, November 27, 2013 5:22 PM

I have spent a lot of time in cities.  I think that urbanization as well as popularity of city-jobs will come to a halt once other planets are colonized.  People will be able to spread out and move towards equilibrium and equality, but right now, cities seem like an excuse to open up potential for danger.  In AVP II: Requiem, the people were ordered to the main area of city for an 'evacuation.'  This evacuation never happened; instead, the area was bombed.  It seems more strategically optimal for foreign or alien invasions to have people living closely in urban areas than it would for them to be spaced out in various country areas.  I know it is terrible to think about that sort of stuff, but the title of this article is "The Ambiguous Triumph of the 'Urban Age,'" and I don't think that cities and urbanization are triumphant at all.  I live in the sticks in Scituate, and I have had so many incredible spiritual experiences in the woods, and deep philosophical discussions with friends there, that I really condemn cities for what it takes away from the spirtual/animal part of being human.  I fear evolution will bring about mass dystopia- as it has done in some countries, and I also do not think that automobiles are a good thing.  I really disapprove of so many things in cities and urban societies, and I am unhappy when I see praise brought into the contexts of terrible achievements that damage the Earth.

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50 Percent of Food is Wasted-SIWI

50 Percent of Food is Wasted-SIWI | Geography Education |
The Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI) is a policy institute that seeks sustainable solutions to the world¡¯s escalating water crisis.


This is an excellent bit of information to keep in mind when discussing agricultural systems and methods of food production.  Why does this happen? How can we reduce that our waste? 

Roland Trudeau Jr.'s comment, July 23, 2012 10:59 AM
I could only assume that we could come up with better processes of distributing food. Food lost in the field is inevitable to some extent, but there are many ways we could save some just by being more careful. It's understandable that we have a great need for food with 7 billion people on the planet, but that doesn't mean we should expedite things as far as to waste 50% of it.. Even if we only purchased enough to hold us over to the next grocery trip, rather then more just in case, we could help effect this problem.
Jolyn Chia's curator insight, January 24, 2014 9:22 PM

From this article,i can see that more and more people are wasting food. we should not waste food as some other people in other country have no food to eat, and we should really be grateful for what we have and what others dont. when we are wasting food, we must always remind ourselves that other people are not as fortunate to have food to eat, or they might have food that come from the rubbish chute, they wont get enough nutrition. The food that we wasted will be treated as precious stuff in their eyes. I aslo learn that we can help reducing waste by only ordering the portions we think we can handle, and try not to waste food. 

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Pavan Sukhdev: Put a value on nature!

TED Talks Every day, we use materials from the earth without thinking, for free. But what if we had to pay for their true value: would it make us more careful about what we use and what we waste?


Companies derive economic value from the environment without paying the true environmental costs of their enterprises.  Sukhdev call this the 'Economic Invisibilty of Nature.'  Many countries are mortgaging their environment's future for economic growth today.  This also disproportionately impacts the developing world and rural people more adversely.  Key to his argument is that we need to identify negative externalities on the environment that produce private profits and acknowledge them as public losses.  

Ana Cristina Gil's curator insight, December 10, 2013 7:13 PM

This a very interesting topic. Most of the time we take our earth for granted imagine if we need to pay for every time we use our earth I don’t think we would to afford it. Is very important for us to take care of it. It so sad that we have to force to protect it; for example here in providence we get punish with a fine if we don’t recycle. Taking care of our world should be a feeling from within people shouldn’t be made to do it.

Kenny Dominguez's curator insight, December 12, 2013 1:15 AM

Nature is very important because everyone in the world depends on it because that is where we can get the oxygen that we need to live and also we can hunt for food because many people in this world do not have access to a supermarket because it is to far or they just don’t believe in the existence of a supermarket. I wonder why some people would decide to live so far from civilization because I could not do that. I would get depressed very quickly because there would be nothing to do there.

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Food, Nutrition and Geography

Peter Menzel's beautiful photography and our Hungry Planet...


This video is a fascinating portal into global food systems and how globalization is impacting local foods.  He traveled around the world to see what families eat in a given week, and how much all the food cost and where it can from.  Many wealthy countries exhibit poor nutritional habits (eating food high in fat, sugar and salt) while some in poorer people have a very balanced diet.  This leads him to describe the 'Nutritional Transition.'  Warning before showing in class: there are brief instances of non-sexualized nudity in the video. 

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The Nation: Bangkokians must do their part

The Nation: Bangkokians must do their part | Geography Education |
Bangkokians must do their part, now The Nation There is one painful fact at this stage of the flood disaster: The waters need to pass through Bangkok as fast as possible to ease the suffering of...


Seth Dixon's insight:

This is a fantastic geographic issue (horrible for people, but intensely spatial).  Should the primate city be spared because of its overwhelming national prominence?  Should the flooded regional provinces suffer more to spare the economic, financial and political center of the country?  The urban hierarchy impacts many national decisions.  For some elevation/flooding maps, click here.

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CSMonitor: Anti-immigration bill, farming and unemployment

CSMonitor: Anti-immigration bill, farming and unemployment | Geography Education |
Farmers in states like Alabama that have passed strong anti-illegal immigration laws are fighting back, saying they are losing labor and that US workers are unwilling to take up farm work.


The connection between immigration, job availability and the recession is not as straightforward as some pundits make it out to be.  Why aren't Americans taking these jobs?  What does that tell us about our economy and the recession?  What does this tell us about migrant labor? 

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UN: Facts and Figures on Rural Women

UN: Facts and Figures on Rural Women | Geography Education |

Countries with the highest levels of hunger also have very high levels of gender inequality...

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Summit will bring leaders together to discuss region's 'brain drain'

Summit will bring leaders together to discuss region's 'brain drain' | Geography Education |
An upcoming summit in Huntingburg, Ind.will bring together rural community leaders to tackle the issue of 'brain drain.'...


This issue of brain drain is not only one that impacts less developed countries, but it is also visible in rural parts of the developed world on a smaller scale.   Fundamentally, it is a geographic issue as the economics, job opportunities and cultural amenities impact the demographic profile of places. 

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Rural US Disappearing? Population Share Hits Low - ABC News

Rural US Disappearing? Population Share Hits Low - ABC News | Geography Education |
Ghost Towns: Rural U.S.Disappearing...


1910: 72% of USA rural

2010: 16% of USA rural


This stark reversal has profoundly reshaped our society.  The patterns noted in Peirce Lewis's 1972 classic article "Small Town in Pennsylvania" have just continued and accelerated.  Critical questions: What forces are driving the change?  What other parts of society are impacted by this shift?

Seth Dixon's insight:

New article URL link here

Wilmine Merlain's curator insight, November 1, 2014 10:03 PM

Our society has been shaped by the migration of its southern residents into northern and western cities. While our cities are overflowing with rural citizens, life in rural America is slowly vanishing to life in the city. Just like times in early America, lack of employment opportunities in the rural America and the blooming business industry in the city, those who had family roots set in rural America are having too uproot their family and relocate in order to participate in the economic trade.

Edgar Manasseh Jr.'s curator insight, January 30, 2015 3:41 PM

I think society itself evolves from the past. Alot of new ventures emerge and society adapts to that. Alot of rural areas have evaporated as a new force of urban planning has emerged where more developed cities have increased and more small cities are being recognized and developed into a more open society. Ghost towns are being more destroyed and created into a opportunity where a driven society will create businesses  for people with no jobs.

WILBERT DE JESUS's curator insight, February 12, 2015 6:44 PM

People move from rural areas to urban areas in the US. This pattern has shifted the notion the founder fathers had when creating this great nation when they envisioned a mostly farming society where people own the land.