For many people, the term ‘geography’ conjures up memories of a subject studied in the early years of high school involving maps, mountains and meridians.
But you might be surprised to learn that modern geography is about much more than knowing that the capital city of Brunei is Bandar Seri Begawan.
Professor Louise Johnson from Deakin University’s School of Humanities and Social Sciences says that contemporary geography is more about the ways in which physical and social processes differentiate the earth.
‘It splits into physical geography where you learn about geo-physical processes (such as plate tectonics, soil formation and climate) and human geography where you would consider the ways economies, cultures and societies create very different places,’ Prof. Johnson explains.
She adds that this type of knowledge is invaluable for solving some of the most significant global problems. ‘Geography can offer unique and vital solutions to uneven development, socio-spatial inequality, building sustainable environments, climate change and so on.’
Whilst it’s clear that there’s more to geography than some people may think, Prof. Johnson says that having a basic understanding of where cities and landmarks are located in the world is still useful.
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