Spatial and Temporal Scales in Geomorphology

S. W.S. Millar

Research output: Chapter in Book/Entry/PoemChapter

4 Scopus citations


Recognizing and reconciling spatial and temporal scales are central to any question posed by a geomorphologist. This chapter focuses on space and time, why they are inseparable, thus difficult to consider in their entirety. The time-dependent approaches of early geomorphology were displaced by time-independent and process-oriented approaches in the 1950s and 1960s. Today, geomorphology struggles to combine space and time using radionuclide dating, modern spatial technologies, and quantitative techniques. However, different variables become important at different scales. This chapter concludes with some thoughts on how geomorphologists might negotiate the range of spatial and temporal scales that constitute geomorphology's domain.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationThe Foundations of Geomorphology
Number of pages16
ISBN (Print)9780080885223
StatePublished - Mar 2013


  • Complexity
  • Equilibrium and nonequilibrium concepts
  • Landscape evolution
  • Process geomorphology
  • Scale-linkage
  • Space-time interactions
  • Spacetime
  • Spatial scales
  • Systems theory
  • Temporal scales
  • Time-dependent
  • Time-independent

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Earth and Planetary Sciences
  • General Environmental Science


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