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Geographers have contributed much to the rich literature that defines the natural and human dimensions ofthe Great Plains. The emphasis that geographers place upon illuminating the spatial components of environmental, societal, economic, and cultural issues has often afforded them a unique perspective on important questions confronting the region. Moreover, geographers have sought to improve our understanding of the complex interrelationships between Great Plains landscapes and their human occupants. These foci of geography have, in recent years, given rise to research on topics such as the drivers and effects of land use and land cover change, rural depopulation and evolving settlement patterns, prospects for economic and social viability of small communities, and the impacts of conflicting landscape ethics on land tenure.