A geographic analysis of the published aquatic biodiversity research in relation to the ecological footprint of the country where the work was done

  • Aristides Moustakas
  • Ioannis Karakassis
Original Paper


The use of the term “biodiversity” in the aquatic literature has expanded rapidly during the last years. In this paper, we address the influence of the geographic, social and economic characteristics of a country in the published effort as it appears in the bibliography from the corresponding author of each publication. Social and geographic characteristics are expressed by coast length, population, the population living a maximum of 100 km from the coast, population density, total fish catches, and continental shelf surface. Economic characteristics are expressed by gross national product, gross national product per capita, footprint and ecological deficit. Our results showed that the majority of the published aquatic biodiversity research was in aquatic ecology journals. The number of publications referring to marine biodiversity per country of origin of the corresponding author was significantly correlated to the length of coastline, fisheries production, gross national product, population density and other economic, social and geographic characteristics of the country. Most of the highly publishing countries are developed countries with an ecologically harmful lifestyle. The research per country carried out in non-adjacent to the country sea zones remains low.


Marine Bibliographic analysis Human geography Political ecology Ecological economics Social ecology 



The comments of two anonymous referees improved significantly an earlier version of this manuscript. The comments of SERRA’s Associate Editor and the Editor-in-chief, George Christakos are appreciated.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Integrative and Comparative Biology, Faculty of Biological SciencesUniversity of LeedsLeedsUK
  2. 2.Biology DepartmentUniversity of CreteCreteGreece

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