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GLOBE Spatial Scales

When entering a new case, the user is asked to enter the site area in km2 of the case as reported in the case source. This site area is then assigned a standard spatial scale relative to GLOBE Land Units (GLU; ~100 km2 hexagons) as described in the rubric in the table below. Case data quality  is then computed in part based on whether the reported site area is the same scale as the area computed from the geometry used to map the case (conformance score).

Code Scale_Name Definition GLU Scale Examples
unknown unknown Scale is unknown. Unknown Whenever inadequate information is available to describe the spatial scale.
local local areas < 1 ha (100 x 100 m) << 1 GLU Small plots typical of ecological field studies, parcels of farmers and other land users; short streams and roads.
landscape landscape areas > 1 ha to 100 km2 < 1 GLU Areas larger than plots, but typically smaller than a GLU.  Landscape studies, farm fields, villages, towns, suburbs, urban neighborhoods, small cities; rivers, roads.
sregion small region areas > 100 km2 to 1000 km2 > 1 to 10 GLU Areas larger than 1 but smaller than 10 GLU. Cities, counties, regions, smaller provinces and states; rivers, highway systems.
lregion large region areas > 1000 km2 > 10 GLU Areas larger than 10 GLU.  Provinces, states, regions, biomes, nations, continents, etc.
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