Remote Sensing of Geomorphodiversity Linked to Biodiversity—Part III: Traits, Processes and Remote Sensing Characteristics

Angela Lausch, Michael E. Schaepman, Andrew K. Skidmore, Eusebiu Catana, Lutz Bannehr, Olaf Bastian, Erik Borg, Jan Bumberger, Peter Dietrich, Cornelia Glässer, Jorg M. Hacker, Rene Höfer, Thomas Jagdhuber, Sven Jany, András Jung, Arnon Karnieli, Reinhard Klenke, Toralf Kirsten, Uta Ködel, Wolfgang KresseUlf Mallast, Carsten Montzka, Markus Möller, Hannes Mollenhauer, Marion Pause, Minhaz Rahman, Franziska Schrodt, Christiane Schmullius, Claudia Schütze, Peter Selsam, Ralf Uwe Syrbe, Sina Truckenbrodt, Michael Vohland, Martin Volk, Thilo Wellmann, Steffen Zacharias, Roland Baatz

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Remote sensing (RS) enables a cost-effective, extensive, continuous and standardized monitoring of traits and trait variations of geomorphology and its processes, from the local to the continental scale. To implement and better understand RS techniques and the spectral indicators derived from them in the monitoring of geomorphology, this paper presents a new perspective for the definition and recording of five characteristics of geomorphodiversity with RS, namely: geomorphic genesis diversity, geomorphic trait diversity, geomorphic structural diversity, geomorphic taxonomic diversity, and geomorphic functional diversity. In this respect, geomorphic trait diversity is the cornerstone and is essential for recording the other four characteristics using RS technologies. All five characteristics are discussed in detail in this paper and reinforced with numerous examples from various RS technologies. Methods for classifying the five characteristics of geomorphodiversity using RS, as well as the constraints of monitoring the diversity of geomorphology using RS, are discussed. RS-aided techniques that can be used for monitoring geomorphodiversity in regimes with changing land-use intensity are presented. Further, new approaches of geomorphic traits that enable the monitoring of geomorphodiversity through the valorisation of RS data from multiple missions are discussed as well as the ecosystem integrity approach. Likewise, the approach of monitoring the five characteristics of geomorphodiversity recording with RS is discussed, as are existing approaches for recording spectral geomorhic traits/ trait variation approach and indicators, along with approaches for assessing geomorphodiversity. It is shown that there is no comparable approach with which to define and record the five characteristics of geomorphodiversity using only RS data in the literature. Finally, the importance of the digitization process and the use of data science for research in the field of geomorphology in the 21st century is elucidated and discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2279
JournalRemote Sensing
Issue number9
StatePublished - 1 May 2022


  • data science
  • earth observation
  • ecosystem integrity
  • functions
  • genesis
  • geodivesity, biodiversity, traits
  • geomorphic traits
  • geomorphodiversity
  • geomorphology
  • land-use intensity
  • landforms
  • multi-mission
  • remote sensing
  • spectral traits
  • structure
  • taxonomy
  • terrain

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Earth and Planetary Sciences


Dive into the research topics of 'Remote Sensing of Geomorphodiversity Linked to Biodiversity—Part III: Traits, Processes and Remote Sensing Characteristics'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this