Sara Brogaard

LCUSUS Co-Director, Assistant Professor




Broadly speaking my research focuses on livelihoods in relation to land change processes and climate variability/change – hence often falling in the overlapping areas of this figure. Land use here is used synonymously with the wider “land change” concept incorporating changes in productivity through agricultural intensification processes as well as land degradation processes. I am also interested in related implications of policy aspects, such as climate change mitigation initiatives and rural reforms influencing both land use and livelihoods.

These research perspectives were at the centre of my PhD work on post reform land productivity and land degradation in Inner Mongolia, China, using a mixed methods approach, and the following postdoc research carried out at McGill University, Montreal.
Link to my thesis »

Land Use Change is the central focus of the LUsTT project (Land Use Today and Tomorrow) through which my present research is mainly funded. The aim of this project is to analyze the multiple natural and societal factors that determine land use as a basis for exploring alternative plausible land use futures and associated risks. The context is the multiple demands on land services illustrated by recent years price increases for a wide range of staple foods particularly cereals. As an example we study the role of an increasing demand for biofuels and related feedstock, regarded as a contested approach to reduce fossil fuel use, within the project. This work includes analyzing European /Swedish policies on renewable energy, focusing on impacts of EU initiated certification schemes for sustainable biofuels. Farmers’ perspectives of yield gaps, the latter applied to a case area in Cameroon, is another approach we apply in the regional African focus of the project while stakeholder dialogs for scenario processes for global land use modeling is also part of LUCSUS work.
For more information, see LUsTT webpage »

The climate vulnerability aspects and the importance of building adaptive strategies in response to multiple stressors was emphasised in the work done in a SIDA funded project on Livelihoods and Climate Change Vulnerability in the Lake Victoria Basin  – where fieldwork and workshop activities for awareness raising were important components of our work.
For more information about the Workshop »

My previous experiences of integrating users´ aspects in research includes being the User Liaison Officer in a multidisciplinary EU 6th Framework Programme funded project SEAMLESS, which aimed at developing an integrated framework to assess ex-ante, agricultural and environmental policy options.
For more information about SEAMLESS project »


My teaching reflects my interests in interdisciplinary aspects of land change processes and associated water resources and these are themes that I teach in the LUMES programme. Lund University Master’s Programme in Environmental Studies and Sustainability Science (
Further, I am in charge of a course on International and Asian sustainability challenges in the Asia Master’s programme ( and teach natural resources and sustainability in a rural context in the LUMID programme, Lund University Master Programme in International Development and Management (  Publications



Publications in international journals and book chapters

Harnesk, D., Brogaard, S. and Peck, P.  (2015) Regulating a global value chain with EU’s sustainability criteria – experiences from the Swedish liquid transport biofuel sector. In press Journal of Cleaner Production.

Elmqvist, B., Brogaard, S., Peck, P. (2013) Hållbarhetskrav på biodrivmedel. 195-208. In: 15 nedslag i klimatforskningen Dåtid Nutid framtid. [15 Touch-downs into Lund University Climate Research”] Marianne Hall, Ingela Björck (Eds).

Gabrielsson, S., Brogaard. S., Jerneck. A. (2013) Living without buffers – illustrating climate vulnerability in the Lake Victoria basin. 2013. Sustainability Science, 8:143-157

Yengoh, T, Genesis and Brogaard, S. (2013) Explaining low yields and low food production in Cameroon: a farmers’ perspective. GeoJournal. DOI 10.1007/s10708-013-9493y

Genesis T. Y., Brogaard, S. and Olsson, L. 2012. Crop Water Requirements in Cameroon’s Savanna Zones Under Climate Change Scenarios and Adaptation Needs, Crop Production Technologies, Peeyush Sharma and Vikas Abrol (Eds.), InTech,

Andersson, E., Brogaard, S., Olsson, L. 2011. ”The Political Ecology of Land Degradation”. Annual Review of Environment and Resources, Vol. 36: 295-319.

Bäcklund, A-K., Bousset, J.P, Brogaard,S., Macombe, C., Taverne, M. and Ittersum, M.,   2010. Science – policy interfaces in impact assessment procedures. p 275-294. In: F. Brouwer & M. v Ittersum (Eds). Environmental and agricultural modelling: integrated approaches for policy impact assessment. Dordrecht: Springer.

Ness, B. and Brogaard, S. 2008. GIS proximity analysis and environmental assessment of sugar beet transport in Scania, Sweden. Area, 40: 459-471.

Runnström, M. Brogaard,S. and Olsson, L. 2006. Estimation of PAR over northern China from daily NOAA AVHRR cloud cover classifications. Geocarto International, 21(1) 51-60.

Brogaard, S. and Li, X. 2005. Agricultural performance on marginal land in Eastern Inner Mongolia, China – Development in the pre- and post-1978 reform periods.  Geojournal, 64:163-175

Brogaard, S., Runnström, M. and Seaquist, J. A. 2005. Primary Production of Inner Mongolia, China between 1982 and 1999 estimated by a satellite-driven light use efficiency model. Global and Planetary Change, Vol. 45, 313-332.

Brogaard, S. and Zhao, X.  2002. Changes in land management and attitudes with changing land use rights -A case study in a crop-livestock farming system, Inner Mongolia, China. Ambio. Vol. 31, No.3, 219-225.

Bull, W.B., Schlyter, P. and Brogaard.S., 1995. Lichenometry analysis of the Kärkerieppe sluch-avalache fan, Kärkevagge, Sweden. Geografiska Ann. 77A (4):231-240.

Contributions to Conferences and Workshops

Akerman, A., Wickströ, A-K., Brogaard. S. 2015. Think H2O! – An educational partnership to raise students’ awareness of the water challenges. 18th WEEC, 29 June to 2 July 2015, Gothenburg, Sweden. Oral presentation.

O´Byrne, D., and Brogaard, S. 2015. Points of contestation in the biofuels debate: Perspectives from selec­ted international organizations in the post 2007/08 food price crises. Biofuels and (ir)responsible innovation: tensions between policy, practice and sustainable development. Conference at Eindhoven University of Technology, Eindhoven, NL. Oral presentation.

Harnesk, D. and Brogaard, S., 2015. What kind of, and whose, sustainability counts? – Implications of EU’s Renewable Energy Directive in sub-Saharan Africa. Accepted for: Biofuels and (ir)responsible innovation: tensions between policy, practice and sustainable development. Conference at Eindhoven University of Technology, Eindhoven, NL. Oral presentation.

Brogaard, S. and Harnesk, D., 2014. Biofuel policy and stakeholder perspectives in Sweden – Initial impacts of EU sustainability criteria on the biofuels sector and implications for land use. GLP open conference Berlin March 18-21. Oral presentation.

Brogaard, S., Elmqvist, B., and Anderberg, S. 2012. Does the EU renewable Energy Directive contribute to fair and just governance of the biofuel sector? A comparison between the Swedish national scheme and EU accredited voluntary schemes Accepted Abstract for Lund Conference on Earth System Governance 18-20 April 2012.

Elmqvist, B., Brogaard, S., Anderberg, S. and Morris, J. 2012. Governance of biofuel production in the transport sector through the renewable energy directive. Leuphana Sustainability Summit, Lüneburg, Feb 29 –March 2. Oral Presentation.

Gabrielsson, S, Brogaard, S, Othero, D. 2010. Scaling up social capital – A prerequisite for community based adaptation in the Lake Victoria basin? Pathways to sustainability. STEPS conference, Sussex, October 23-24. Oral Presentation.

Ness. B., Brogaard, S., Anderberg, S. and Olsson. L. 2010. The African Land grab – Creating more equitable Governance Strategies through codes of conduct and certification schemes. The American Association for the Advancement of Science, Annual Conference, San Diego, Feb 18-22. Poster Presentation.

Gabrielsson, S., Brogaard, S., Alkan-Olsson, J. and Olsson, L. 2010. Accepted Abstract. Seasonal pattern of climate vulnerability and adaptation in the Lake Victoria basin – Identifying needs and opportunities using a multi-stakeholder approach. The American Association for the Advancement of Science, Annual Conference, San Diego, Feb 18-22. Poster Presentation

Gabrielsson, S., Brogaard, S. and Lager, B. 2009. Complexities of climate vulnerability and adaptation – Findings from Nyando District, Kenya. Side Event Dec 10 hosted by The Government of Kenya, SSC-VI Agroforestry and the World Bank at COP 15 United Nations Climate Change Conference Copenhagen Dec7- Dec18 2009. Poster in A4 size to be distributed at the side event.

Ness, B, Brogaard S, Olsson, L and Anderberg, S. 2009. The African Land-Grab: Creating Equitable Governance Strategies through Codes-of-Conduct and Certification Schemes. Earth System Governance: People, Places, and the Planet. Conference on the Human Dimension of Global Environmental change. Amsterdam, 2-4 December 2009. Paper 19 pp.

Brogaard, S. 2009. Reflections on Land Cover Change, Livelihoods and Vulnerability – The case of the Keerqin Steppe Region, Inner Mongolia. Workshop: Sustainable Land Management in the Highlands of Asia. 18-22 May, Shangri-La, Northwest Yunnan, China.

Alkan Olsson, J., M.K. Van Ittersum, A.-K. Bäcklund, S. Brogaard, F. Brouwer: 2009. Participatory IA tool development: Lessons learnt in the SEAMLESS project. Integrated Assessment of Agriculture and Sustainable Development  Conference March 10-12, 2009, Egmond aan Zee, the Netherlands.

Bäcklund, A.-K., J. Alkan Olsson, S. Brogaard, M. Taverne, J.P. Bousset, J. Wery, M. Van Ittersum. 2009.Multiple agendas and cultures in a participatory development of computerized IA tools: The experience of SEAMLESS. Integrated Assessment of Agriculture and Sustainable Development  Conference March 10-12, 2009, Egmond aan Zee, the Netherlands

P. Reidsma, J. Alkan-Olsson, I. Bezlepkina, S. Brogaard, J. Queste, R. Fischer, M. van Ittersum. 2009.SEAMLESS training material on concepts and models for Integrated Assessment of Agriculture and Sustainable Development. Integrated Assessment of Agriculture and Sustainable Development  Conference March 10-12, 2009, Egmond aan Zee, the Netherlands

Alkan-Olsson, A., Bäcklund, A-K., Ittersum, M., and Brogaard, S. 2007. Integrated impact assessment Tools- A way to design future farming systems in the case of the SEAMLESS integrated framework? Farming Systems Design 2007: Methodologies for Integrated Analysis of Farm Production Systems. Int. Symposium. Catania, Sicily, Italy, 10-12 September 2007. Poster Presentation.

Brogaard, S. and Seaquist, J.A.  2005. Primary production sensitivity to climate change scenarios and rural livelihood vulnerability, Inner Mongolia, semi-arid China. Human Security and Climate Change Workshop, Oslo, 21-23 June 2005. Oral presentation. Paper 18 pp.

Brogaard, S. and Olsson, L. 2001. Land Use, Grain Production and Climatic Variability – A Case Study From Eastern Inner Mongolia. International Convention of Asia Scholars, Berlin, August 2001. Poster presentation.

Runnström, M. Brogaard, S, and Seaquist, J. A. 2001. Satellite Data driven Parametric Model of Primary Production Implemented over the Inner Mongolian Rangeland, Northern China. Global Change Open Science Conference, Amsterdam, July 2001. Poster presentation. Awarded for best student poster in category and printed in Global Change News Letter No 48, Dec 2001, p17

Brogaard, S. and Runnström, M. 2000. Environmental and land use response to the reforms in semi-arid China – indications from two study areas. European Conference on Agriculture and Rural Development in China, Leiden, January, 2000. Oral presentation. Paper 17 pp.

Reports etc.

Alkan Olsson J., Brogaard, S. Bäcklund, A. 2009. PD 7.2.4, Participatory Integrated Assessment tool development – Lessons learnt in the SEAMLESS project. SEAMLESS integrated project, EU 6th Framework Programme, contract no. 010036-2,, 71  pp.

Reidsma, P., Alkan Olsson, J., Queste, J., Brogaard, S., Bezlepkina, I., van Ittersum, M.K, 2008. PD7.5.2 – 7.5.3 – Training materials for different categories of users, SEAMLESS integrated project, EU 6th Framework Programme, contract no. 010036-2,, 134 pp.

Alkan Olsson, J, Queste, J., Reidsma, P., Brogaard S., Bezlepkina, I., and Van Ittersum, M., 2008.Compilation of crucial elements of knowledge to be incorporated in the learning (and information) material for SEAMLESS-IF,  PD 7.5.1, SEAMLESS integrated project, EU 6th Framework Programme, contract no. 010036-2,, 23 pp.

Alkan Olsson, J, Brogaard S., Queste, J., Brouwer, F. and Van Ittersum, M., 2007. Plan for Use and Dissemination of Knowledge, D0.3.1, SEAMLESS integrated project, EU 6th Framework Programme, contract no. 010036-2,, 61 pp.

Ostwald, M., Chen, D., Xie, Y. Knutsson, P., Brogaard, S., Borne, K. and Chen, Y. 2004. Impact of climate change and variability on local-scale land use, Shaanxi, China. Report C61 Earth Science Centre, Göteborg University. 56 pp.

Brogaard, S. 2003. Recent changes in land use and productivity in agro-pastoral Inner Mongolia, China. Meddelande från Lunds Universitets Geografiska Institutioner, Avhandlingar nr. 151. (Ph.D. thesis).

Brogaard, S. and Prieler, S., 1998. Land cover in Horqin Grassland – Detecting changes between 1975 and 1990 by means of Remote Sensing, IIASA Interim Report IR-98-044. 21 pp.

Brogaard, S. and Ólafsdódttir, R., 1997. Ground-truths or ground-lies? Environmental sampling for remote sensing application exemplified by vegetation cover data. Lund Electronic report in Physical Geography. No.1

Brogaard, S. and Falkenström, H., 1995 Assessing salinization, sand encroachment and expanding urban areas in the Nile Valley using Landsat MSS data. Seminarieuppsatser Nr. 35. Lunds Universitets Naturgeografiska Institution (M.Sc thesis)

Works of popular scholarship, including editing of popular science/dissemination material

Main editor of the final information brochure for the FP6 Project Seamless: SEAMLESS – Science for Integrated Assessment of Agricultural Systems in Europe. 20 pages.

Editor of FP6 Project Seamless bi-annual Newsletter: found at
Newsletter No 2, May 2006: Including: Linking farm and market level models, New guidelines for impact assessment,  Indicators in SEAMLESS, SeamFrame – Knowledege base, Report from the Brixen Meeting, Call for users.

Newsletter No 4, June 2007: Including: Impact assessment of agricultural systems – SEAMLESS Halfway, Enabling micro –macro analysis in SEAMLESS-IF, Visualising changes of farming in a landscape, The trade liberalization and nitrogen Test Cases, Assessing institutional compatibility of new policies

Newsletter No 5, March 2008: Including: Procedure for Impact assessment in SEAMLESS-IF, Database of SEAMLESS, Introduction to APES – the field level model, Users’ involvement in the testing of SEAMLESS-IF

Brogaard, S. 2000. Agrara reformer i Kina – effekter på miljö och markanvändning i östra Inre Mongoliet (Agriculture reforms in China – impacts on environment and land use in Eastern Inner Mongolia). Geografiska Notiser, nr 2, 117-129.

Brogaard, S. Markförstöring i Kina – ekologi och politik, 1999 (Land degradation in China – Ecology and Policy). In:  A compilation of 20 papers in popular science – Faculty of Science, Lund University, spring term 1999. UPC, Lund University.

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