The relative influences of land-owner and landscape heterogeneity in an agent-based model of land-use
The purpose of this work is to explore the extent to which landowners' land-use decisions are influenced by heterogeneous land-use preferences, spatial externalities, and unique suitability features? We develop and calibrate a heterogeneous-agent portfolio-theory model to the historical Southern Indiana land-use history. Calibration exercises demonstrate that our spatially-explicit approach provides an accurate description of landowners in our study area, with the most descriptive model explaining 70% of land-use variation across time and space. Comparative statics simulations indicate that landowners' heterogeneous calibrated preference parameters marginally influence the landscape more than suitability and externality parameters. Policy simulations demonstrate that weaker multi-policy management strategies simultaneously targeting heterogeneities and spatial interactions can provide 1-6% more forest that is 1-3% less fragmented compared to alternative strong single-policy approaches.
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