Spatially explicit assessment of land ecological security with spatial variables and logistic regression modeling in Shanghai, China

  • Yongjiu Feng
  • Yan Liu
  • Yu Liu
Original Paper


Ecological security is a fundamental component of regional security that has drawn increased attention worldwide over the past two decades. This paper presents a novel approach to assess the status of land ecological security (LES) in Shanghai, China from 1992 to 2011 using spatial variables and a logistic regression model. The LES status of 1745 points within the study area in 1992, 2001 and 2011 was sampled systematically using a 2 × 2 km grid sample frame and evaluated based on an expert method with ten experts from five fields. A five-point Likert scale was used to score the LES status as very insecure, insecure, neutral, secure or very secure. We identified several explanatory factors to the LES status, including distance-based variables describing the proximities to urban center, developed areas and sources of pollution, as well as variables regarding the density of built-up areas and the mean value of normalized difference vegetation index. A logistic regression model was used to quantify the relationship between LES scores and the spatial variables at each of the three time points, resulting in a series of maps illustrating the LES patterns of Shanghai in 1992, 2001 and 2011. The results show that LES is either very insecure or insecure at the center of Shanghai and at its district centers, and the LES of the entire Shanghai municipality has deteriorated significantly from 1992 to 2011. This research contributes to an enhanced understanding of LES changes resulting from rapid urbanization and industrialization of the Shanghai municipality and provides a methodological framework to study LES elsewhere.


Land ecological security (LES) Expert evaluation methods Spatial variables Logistic regression Change analysis Shanghai 



This study was supported by National Natural Science Foundation of China (Project No. 41406146), and Natural Science Foundation of Shanghai Municipality (Project No. 13ZR1419300).

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest

Ethical approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards. This article does not contain any studies with animals performed by any of the authors. Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.College of Marine SciencesShanghai Ocean UniversityShanghaiChina
  2. 2.The Key Laboratory of Sustainable Exploitation of Oceanic Fisheries Resources (Shanghai Ocean University)Ministry of EducationShanghaiChina
  3. 3.School of Geography, Planning and Environmental ManagementThe University of QueenslandBrisbaneAustralia

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