Geography and Development

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The analysis shows that hail is concentrated on east ranges of Zagros extending toward north west of Iran on a direct line to the boarders of Ilam province and also concentrated on the southern parts of central Alborz range, from this point to the southern parts of the country, the hail frequency is decreased and in some stations located in the southern parts of Iran, the hail is almost zero. There are two weather stations in the eastern parts of the country namely Birjand and Torbatheydarye where a higher level of hail is recorded in comparing to the other parts of the country probably due to high altitudes such as Qayenat Mountain ranges and Birjand.

Keywords: Hail - Hailstorm- Thunderstorm- Temporal and spatial distribution- Iran.

  1. AbdeManafi, Dina (2004). The study of erratic indicators, wind right angle cut and the situation of moisture at the time of hail precipitation, an M.A thesis, Tehran university.

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  3. AminiLeyla et al ( 2003). The study of synoptic-thermodynamic of hail precipitation in Isfahan province, 11th conference on geophysics of Iran.

  4. Charles, A. & Doswell, C,A (1993). Scientific Approaches for very short range forecasting of severe convective storms in the united state of America.

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Temporal and Spatial Analysis of Hail in Iran

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Geography and Development

10nd Year - No. 28 - Autumn 2012

Received : 2/5/2011 Accepted : 18/7/2012

PP : 16 - 20

A Survey on Capacities and Problems for Sustainable Development of Mountainous Valleys Using the SWOT Model

Case study: Kardeh Valley in the North of Mashhad City

Dr. Ali Asghar Kadivar

Assoistant Professor of Geography

University of Payam Nour

Dr. Mohammad Mosavi

Assoistant Professor of Management Governmental

University of Payam Nour


After several decades of struggle for development of rural districts and protection of water and soil of these regions, Unfortunately,The Poverty and jobless and damages to natural resources is further on progress in many countries, particularly rural regions of the developing countries. The reason for this situation is that ,the index for poverty reduction, jobless and imbalance in development definition has not been considered for three decades (1950-1980) and the development has been defined only as a per person income . The surveys and different experiences in the far distance of the world, particularly in developing countries, shows that the reduction in poverty, reduction in jobless and sustainable utilization of natural resources in rural environment as well as a decrease in distance between poor’s and wealthy people could not be achieved successfully only by looking to agricultural problems. But a structural looking to residents in villages and consideration of all residents’ problems if accompanied with a progress in non – agricultural business and income creation, using all rural capability in the region, could be a good solution for rural problems. Therefore ,in recent decades, the policies of the countries toward the different economic activities particularly in development of rural tourism as generation of a new income has been recommended to resist against the rural poverty and rural jobless. Attention to non agricultural activities in rural environment accompanied by social– economic improvement in rural families (those with no or less property and water) will bring a reduction in environmental hazards of the rural districts and also will reduce the urban problems of suburbs and environmental pollution.

Now days, the new participatory look is the central column of sustainable development .Participatory management is a people satisfactory method and includes the role of local societies in sustainable development as a determinant factor. Participation in decision making, share in responsibility and having the authority, could be the best particularity and a symbol of real participation. Participation in public affairs will familiarize the most of people with possibilities and particularly with limitations exist around them. They will learn to act not only as an individual but also as a social group so that the potential of people power in different levels could be appeared. Using the managers and the local superior groups to determine the most appropriate strategies for development is the correct decision. Although it has not the benefits of horizontal participation but it is close to Ozalid Strategy and it has been useful and suitable method in many regions particularly in rural regions of developing countries.

A Survey on Capacities and Problems for Sustainable Development ...

Therefore, to make the activities of the rural societies sustainable, the present research is to make known the various capacities of mountainous valleys for creation of variation in job occupation and enhance the income based on the views of local authorities and using SOWT model. To achieve the results and goals of the research, two important questions should be answered:

1- Considering the natural conditions of the in villages of Kardeh valley, What are the strength points, the weak points, opportunities and threats in this region ?

2- To reduce the existing problems and challenges in this region particularly in natural resources, which kind of guidelines and strategies are there with consideration of the weak points and opportunities?
The Method of Investigation

This investigation has been done through field study and with a descriptive-analytic method using SWOT model. In the field study, local managers questioners (including village governor and members of Islamic council in the study area) with a total number of 45 persons were used. The study and determination of weak points, strength points, opportunities and threats were undertaken in two steps in the study area. The collected data were classified and totalized and based on totalized data and using SWOT model of David, the appropriate strategies were compiled and presented.

Discussion and Results

The external factors evaluation Matrix

The external evaluation matrix is the result of strategic study of external factors. In matrix, the opportunities and threats of external environment are collected and evaluated. If the amounts of total external factors were between 1 to 2.5, the result would show the treat and if between 2.5 to 4 it determines the existing of opportunities. So, the number 2.18 in the matrix table of external factors evaluation shows that a relative threat in the area exists.

Internal factors evaluation matrix

The internal factors evaluation matrix is the result of strategic study of internal factors. This matrix writes and evaluates the main strength points and weak points. if the amounts of final internal evaluation of internal factors were between 1 to 2.5, this indicate the weakness and if the result shows number 2.5 to number 4 that means the strength . So the number 2.65 in the internal factors evaluation means that a relative strength exists in the study area.

The written strategies:

Considering the extracted data from questioners, the internal and external factors evaluation matrix was written and by using the SWOT analysis matrix, the strategies were written too. At the end, using the 4 boxes matrix of internal and external factors (IE), the appropriate strategies were selected from presented strategies and then the result was proposed.
The final mark for internal factor evaluation(IFE)

As it is shown in matrix of external factors, variation in job occupation considering the limited source for water will come in box (3) or competition box. This point shows that diversify in occupation with consideration of water limitation has a good situation but from the point of external factors it has not a good situation.

The final mark for internal factor evaluation(IFE)

A Survey on Capacities and Problems for Sustainable Development ...

As it is shown in the table , the points resulted from Minimum and Maximum of internal and external standard deviation around the points (2.65 , 2.18 ) shows that the concentration of points are in box (3) and dispersion of points are in boxes of (1) and (4) . This means that, in addition of competition strategies, the attack and defending strategies should be compiled and be executed too.

The result of the present investigation, based on the views of local managers, gives us a new guideline in all-inclusive development with consideration the capabilities and the problems of space and location in the mountainous valleys in the suburbs of towns.

Based on the investigation results, the area under investigation has appropriate conditions from the points of internal factors. But the area has not a good condition from the points of external factors. therefore, considering the results achieved from the four boxes matrix of internal and external factors and concentration of mean points in box number three (competition) and dispersion of points in boxes No.1 (Attack) and No.4 (conservative action), the competitive strategies and diversification in job occupation, considering the limitation in water resources as the first priority and the conservative action and defending as later priority, should be confirmed.

According to the present investigation results, the following strategies as appropriate strategies are presented on the priority importance:

  1. Creation of jobs in the form of productive – service cooperatives to reduce the pressure on water and soil resources

  2. To improve the water utilization method in agricultural sector

  3. The promotion and strengthening the mechanism of participatory management with the priority in using the skilled and educated local human power.

  4. To create and develop the multipurpose people companies.

  5. Improvement and approving the laws and the pertinent regulation in water resources management.

  6. Creation and strengthening the watershed management to protect the natural resources.

  7. Development and promotion the required skills in the optimum utilization of resources through organization of local and regional training workshops.

  8. Creation and development the changeable industries and packaging to enhance the increased value of agricultural and husbandry products.

  9. Creation and development of new methods in utilization of soil and water resources.


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Geography and Development

10nd Year - No. 28 - Autumn 2012

Received : 25/5/2011 Accepted : 18/7/2012

PP : 21- 24
Spatial Monitoring of Groundwater Salinity in Drought and Wet Periods

Case Study: Tabriz Plain

Dr. Fariba Karami

Associate Professor of Geography

University of Tabriz

Haneih Kazemi

M.Sc University of Tabriz


Groundwater, which forms part of hydrologic cycle is a reliable source for supplying the water required by human being. The occurrence of droughts and heavy precipitations are the most important climatic extremes having both short and long-term impacts on the ground- water availability. The results of climatic extremes propagate through the hydrological system, including surface water and groundwater (unsaturated zone and saturated groundwater). These impacts include changes in groundwater recharge resulting from the erratic behavior of the annual and seasonal distribution of precipitation and temperature; changes in evapotranspiration resulting from changes in vegetation. Drought is a recurring, natural phenomenon, which affects every part of the hydrological cycle. Droughts are mostly caused by periods of lower than average precipitation and propagate through the hydrological system. Fall of water table and decrease of groundwater chemical quality cause secondary soil salinity, surface water salinity and reduction of soil fertility in arid and semi-arid regions. These phenomena, which salted soil and water resources, are effective factors of desertification in the world. Thus, spatial monitoring of groundwater chemical quality at the time of climatic extremes is necessary for stable management and planning water and soil resources in the area of exposed to salinity hazard. Continued and intense droughts occurred in Iran and Tabriz plain in past years (1998-2008). The impacts of droughts make dry surface water resources and bring down water table strongly. In Tabriz plain, Farmers used surface waters of Aji-chai, Komor-chai and snikh-chai rivers. Also, they used groundwater of plain. In drought periods, that precipitation declines and groundwater level falls, high exploitation of groundwater resources change chemical quality waters. Low quality waters aren’t suitable for agriculture. Also, salt waters cause secondary soil salinity in plain. Therefore, the aims of this research are determination of drought and wet periods in Tabriz plain by SPI index and spatial monitoring of chemical quality groundwater in the study years in Tabriz plain. Tabriz plain is located at the east of Urmia lake. Its west limit is salty swamps of Urmia lake margins. Moro Mountain is located in the north of Tabriz plain and Sahand Mountain is the south limit of Tabriz plain. The Onebne-ali elevations are forming the east limit of Tabriz plain. Aji-chai River is flowing in Tabriz plain toward Urmia Lake. Other rivers such as Saeedabad-chai, Mehranrud-chai and Gomanab-chai are joining to Aji-chai River. There are two types of aquifers in Tabriz plain (Confined aquifer and unconfined aquifer). Unconfined aquifer located in east, northeast and southeast of the study plain. There are confined aquifer and unconfined aquifer in parts of west. Unconfined aquifer into plio-pleistocene tuffs has high quality waters and located in North Slope of Sahand Mountain. The plio-pleistocene tuff is composed of red and green andesitic tuff admixed with large quantities of blocks, gravel and sand of volcanic and alluvial origin. Also, unconfined aquifer into alluvial tuff is the most important aquifer in the area has been known for many years as a good aquifer.

In this research, for defining the study region, topographical maps (1: 50000), geological maps (1:100000) and IRS satellite images were used. For calculating drought periods, monthly precipitation of selected stations in Tabriz plain in the study periods (1972-2008) were used .For studying the chemical quality of ground waters, the chemical analysis results of groundwater samples of 40 deep and semi-deep wells were used. Quality indexes include Electrical Conductivity (EC), Sodium Absorption Ratio (SAR) and Total Dissolved Solid (TDS). The electrical conductivity of water estimates the total amount of solids dissolved in water -TDS, which stands for Total Dissolved Solids. TDS is measured in ppm (parts per million) or in mg/l. Quality indexes maps (EC, SAR) draw by Arc/GIS , for studying spatial variation groundwater chemical quality. Then, drought and wet periods selected by Standard Precipitation Index (SPI). The Standardized Precipitation Index (SPI) is a way of measuring drought. The Standardized Precipitation Index (SPI) is a probability index that considers only precipitation. The SPI is an index based on the probability of recording a given amount of precipitation, and the probabilities are standardized so that an index of zero indicates the median precipitation amount (half of the historical precipitation amounts are below the median, and half are above the median). The index is negative for drought, and positive for wet conditions. As the dry or wet conditions become more severe, the index becomes more negative or positive.

Results and Discussion

The results of SPI index show that in the study period of (1972-2007), precipitation positive anomalies is high in slopes of plain margins. Gradually, negative anomalies increase toward center and northwest of plain. Based on Standardized Precipitation Index SPI in the index drought year, the northern and southern mountains plains of Tabriz plain have a normal situation. Ground water’s EC show that excellent quality waters are involving % 30.38 and good quality ground waters are including %23.25 plain aquifers in drought period (2000-2001). These ground waters belong to aquifers of Sahand mountain and north elevations of Tabriz plain. Gradually waters quality decrease toward plain center and Urmia Lake. So that 17.8% of the area underground waters have a medium quality. Therefore, the ground waters are unsuitable and very unsuitble in these regions. Salt ground waters involve %13.02 plain aquifers and very salt ground waters contain %15.18. The base of EC rates and drought maps of plain, salty and very salty ground water conform to drought and strongly drought areas. SAR index of Tabriz plain ground water in drought period (2000 October) show the very alkalinity water. These aquifers located in central and end parts of Tabriz plain. These lands conform to drought and intense drought areas. The rate of SAR ratio reduces toward elevations. Water quality increases toward elevations especially Sahand mountain. Moderate alkalinity waters contain %15.27 of the plain aquifers. Excellent and good waters are %36.9 and %22.48 plain aquifers Spatial distribution of quality indexes differ in wet period (2003 October) from drought period. Fresh ground waters rates are high in wet period. Salt water (% 9.47) and very salty water (%8.86) belong to the northwest plain aquifers. Excellent (%27.5) and good (%23.26) waters belong to Sahand mountain aquifers. Sodium Absorption Ratio (SAR) map show that there are high alkalinity ground water in small area and they located in west of Tabriz plain in wet periods. The base of (SAR) Ratio, moderate water quality includes %16.33 plain ground water.

Spatial Monitoring of Groundwater Salinity in Drought and Wet Periods


The study of SPI index in periods (1972-2008) show that drought and wet periods alternately have occurred in Tabriz plain. Also, frequency of short dry periods is high as compared with long dry periods. Generally, precipitation negative anomalies increase toward plain. Chemical analysis results of 40 samples water show that excellent and good groundwater belong to Sahand mountain and north elevations aquifers, but water quality decrease in the course of center of plain and Urmia coasts. These conditions intensify drought periods.

Keywords: Spatial Monitoring, Groundwater Salinity, Drought, SPI, Tabriz Plain

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Geography and Development

10nd Year - No. 28 - Autumn 2012

Received : 20/4/2011 Accepted : 18/7/2012

PP : 25 - 30
A Survey on the Level of Agricultural Development and its Effective

Indicators in Hirmand

Dr. Mahmood Reza Mirlotfi

Assistant Professor of Geography and Rural Planning

University of Zabol

Dr. Hamid Shayan

Assistant Professor of Geography and Rural Planning

University of Mashhad ferdowsi

Dr. Seyyed AmirMohammad Alavizadeh

Associate Professor of Geography and Rural Planning

University of Payame Noor


From geopolitic point of view, the underdevelopment of the border regions which creates basic challenges for country has a large amount of effects on the developing process of the country. Solving the problems of the border regions specially providing stable security in these regions is not merely a security and military issue but it is political, economical, social and cultural in nature. In this regard, the strategy for organizing and developing the rural areas in these regions becomes highly important. In fact, agriculture and its various activities have a special role in different economical, social and environmental dimensions of rural areas (Whelan, 2003:7).

Lack of attention for assessing the magnitude of their effect decreases the agricultural potentials of the rural areas and if this process continues, the agricultural sector and therefore the social and economical stability of the rural areas will be destroyed. The scope of the activities in the agricultural sector in the country's rural areas in one side and the occupational and income dependence of villagers on this sector on the other side, requires the planners to pay more attention to this issue because the national development and the real economical independence of every region is contingent upon the agricultural sector.

Many studies have been done by researchers about the factors affecting on the growth and the development of agriculture and each of these studies have pointed to particular causes and factors such as adverse geographical conditions like water shortage, lack of fertile lands and hot weather (Meijerink, 2007:47); focusing on all of the production factors and promoting productivity (Nin–pratt et al., 2009:101); technological development and local production, tax cuts, government investments on researches and infrastructures and the mechanization of agricultural sector(Chen et al., 2008: 581). Some researchers state that the public infrastructures have an important role in the development of agricultural sector (Mamtzakis, 2003:169), and some believes that the productivity of labor force in promoting the agriculture level (Baylis, 2008:75), and the integration of farmlands in order to increase utilizing mechanization and the deep development of agriculture by increasing the function and the intensity of cultivation are considered to be among the most important strategies for agricultural development by other researchers (melor,Gavi,1999:25).

Others cite that the essential training for effective access to modern technologies and the farmers' awareness about the market conditions and their literacy level are the major factors in agricultural development and these researchers believe that those strategies which do not focus on human force are not successful (Stiglitz, 2000:552). Some researchers approve that the close relationship and interaction between researchers, county agents, farmers and policy-makers is of high importance in agricultural development (colemon, 2000:311). Physical infrastructures and technologies for achieving high rate of agricultural growth are considered to be essential by some other researchers (Ravallion & Datt, 2002: 383).

On this basis and with respect to the performed studies and the spatial differences and various environmental factors and also for achieving a unit development pattern in each region and a comprehensive knowledge of effective and exclsive factors, in this research it is tried to study a special area (Hirmand township), in this regard, the current study seeks answers for the following questions:

Do the effective factors in agricultural sector of this region have different impacts?

What effective factors should be prioritized for promoting the agricultural level of this region?

To answer the above questions, the following hypothesis can be presented:

The various and effective factors on the agricultural sector of the region are of different level of importance.

Among the different effective dimensions, production dimension and its indices affect mostly on the development of agriculture.
Research Methodology

The current study is an applied research and analytic-descriptive research methods and statistical methods have been used for analyzing the data. The data have been collected from the sample villages through methods and field studies and the major amount of data from the sample population have been gathered through questionnaire which have been finalized after it was approved by experts and also after doing a pre-test. The collected data have been analyzed by EXCEL and SPSS software and the reliability of items has been calculated by Cronbach’s Alpha test statistic with a range of 0-1 and its value is 0.819.

Regarding special conditions of agricultural activity in this region and also some basic features such as pragmatism, dependence upon the environmental capabilities and an all-directional trend in agriculture planning (Noori, 1379:10), the explanatory components of agricultural development have been analyzed in four administrative, social, structural and producing dimensions (Figure 1 and Table 1). It is worth saying that the above-mentioned dimensions have been offered by The Committee of The International Geographical Association for identifying agricultural types in different parts of the world (Grick, 1375:7).

A Survey on the Level of Agricultural Development and its Effective ...

The indices of different dimensions of the level of agricultural development have been examined in 40 sample villages. The qualitative scores of different dimensions are the average of scores of every different dimension's indices for every village (Figure 1). To have symmetric non-Likert indices, they were scored according to Likert scale (1-5) and range, therefore the average number of each index shows the score or value of village in that index and the sum of all averages of indices in each dimension shows the village score in that dimension. Considering the range of the average of dimensions’ scores and the dependant variable, villages were clustered into three groups (by the cluster analysis option in SPSS software).

The explanatory factors for agricultural development variable were introduced by using factor analysis and at the end the villages were categorized into two groups according to the scores of agricultural level and based on (Si) ± 0/2µ and for finding a suitable strategy indices which have significant differences between these two groups of villages will be introduced.

The sample population consists of 12207 households who live in 197 villages with more than 20 households. According to the Sharpe & Cochran’s formula and the correction formula (Saraee, 1371:129 and 137), the volume of the sample villages was 40. Using proportional allocation method, the number of sample villages in Jahan Abad, Doost Mohamad, Ghergheri and Margan townships were respectively 10, 13, 9 and 8. The villages were selected randomly after codifying (them) by mini-tab software.
Discussion and Results

According to the nation-wide census of 1385(2006), the extent of Systan region is 15197 square meters whose population is 400'000 who concentrated in 6 urban areas and 937 villages. 250'000 of this population live in villages. District of Miyankangi, among them, with an area of 1009 square meters and a population of 73254 is one of the important border regions in Systan. This region has 100 kilometers common border with Afghanistan and consists of 300 habitable villages (The Statistical Center of Iran, The nation-wide census of 1385/2006).

During the history, because of flat and fertile plain lands and also Hirmand River, the main activity of the villages in district of Miyankangi has been based on agriculture. In current situation, because of high percentage of farmer families (67.85%), the economical base of this geographical region under the study is agriculture. Yet, agriculture in this region has always been facing eith different challenges such as water level fluctuations of Hirmand River and substantial decline in farming activities. For example, the average of cultivated lands with an area above 30'000 hectares in the 1383-1384 crop year was decreased to about 40'000 hectares. In these situations, of course, the existence of more than 2000 water holes can be a good contribution for stable agriculture. Although in the suitable water conditions still the water consumption is up to 9000 cubic meters per hectares for cultivating wheat, the productivity of 1900 kilograms per hectare cannot be achieved (The Crusade for Agriculture of Zabol, 1387).

It is worth noting that lack of real agriculture vitality in the region affected by traditional exploitation systems, lack of complementary cycles in the process of agriculture production for increasing added value, the weakness of vocational training, lack of public organizations,… have caused the instability of the pillars of the economy there. The consequence of the above procedure along with the adjacency to Afghanistan have provoked a group of active forces to seek for jobs other than farming and producing occupations specially goods smuggling or working as an unskilled worker in cities like Rafsanjan or Yazd.

These factors have resulted in the prevalence of unemployment, increasing unofficial jobs, widespread poverty (20% of this region's population receives the services of The Imam Khomeini Relief Foundation), the exit of capital and human forces, the destruction of resources and leaving the major villages of the region. According to the above issues and by considering the previous researches and geographical differences and various environmental factors, and also for finding a unified developmental pattern for each region, a comprehensive understanding of effective and unique factors, in this research it has tried to study a specific region (Hirmand city). The results show that the villages under study have different levels of agricultural potential, for example Ghajar-e-Barani has maximum average of agricultural development level that is 3/26 and Galle Bache has minimum average of agricultural development level that is 1/36. The results of the regression analysis show that the production dimension and its indices have influenced the agricultural development of the region mostly.

Many strategies have been offered for achieving agricultural development. But they are not encompassing because of variety in situational conditions and as a result recognizing various and effective factors on the agriculture of the regions are highly important.

Regarding the results of correlation coefficients and the level of agricultural development of the rural areas, we should take action in terms of increasing the number of livestock and wheat productivity as the main cultivated crop in the region, increasing the literacy level and creating motivation and interest by supporting farmers in the process of production to distribution, family planning programs, and paying more attention to remote rural areas. Above all and by considering the results of factor analysis, quick expansion of greenhouse cultivated areas and providing suitable conditions for using farm machinery such as tractor in agricultural development programs should be prioritized. According to the results of t-test, the quality and quantity level of services offered by The Crusade for Agriculture in specialized issues (specially providing education and extension sessions, controlling the cultivated lands by experts, providing cultivation programs), farm machinery and constant management for fair distribution of inputs should be promoted.
Keywords: Agriculture, Agricultural Development, Sistan, Hirmand County.

A Survey on the Level of Agricultural Development and its Effective ...


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Geography and Development

10nd Year - No. 28 - Autumn 2012

Received : 11/6/2011 Accepted : 18/7/2012

PP : 31- 39

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