PROGRESS IN GEOGRAPHY ›› 2018, Vol. 37 ›› Issue (1): 57-65.doi: 10.18306/dlkxjz.2018.01.007

• Subdisciplines • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Progress and future prospect of soil geography

Ganlin ZHANG1,2,*(), A-Xing ZHU3,4, Zhou SHI5, Qiubing WANG6, Baoyuan LIU7, Xingchang ZHANG8, Zhihua SHI9, Jinling YANG1, Feng LIU1, Xiaodong SONG1, Huayong WU1, Rong ZENG1   

  1. 1. State Key Laboratory of Soil and Sustainable Agriculture, Institute of Soil Science, CAS, Nanjing 210008, China
    2. University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
    3. School of Geographical Science, Nanjing Normal University, Nanjing 210023, China
    4. Department of Geography, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, WI 53706, USA
    5. College of Environmental and Resource Sciences, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou 310058, China
    6. College of Land and Environment, Shenyang Agricultural University, Shenyang 110161, China
    7. School of Geography, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875, China
    8. Institute of Soil and Water Conservation, Northwest Sci-tech University of Agriculture and Forestry, Yangling 712100, Shaanxi, China
    9. College of Resources and Environment, Huazhong Agricultural University, Wuhan 430070, China
  • Received:2018-01-15 Revised:2018-01-20 Online:2018-01-28 Published:2018-01-28
  • Contact: Ganlin ZHANG
  • Supported by:
    National Natural Science Foundation of China, No.L1624026, No.41571130051;Research Project on the Development Strategy of Chinese Academy of Sciences, No.2016-DX-C-02;Basic Project of State Commission of Science Technology of China, No.2014FY110200


Soil geography is the sub-discipline of soil science and geography dealing with the spatiotemporal changes of soil, and is a part of the earth surface system science. The research topic of soil geography is gradually changing from soil body to critical zone from the perspective of the earth surface system, meanwhile the research methodology develops toward "digital". Based on an introduction of the theoretical and technical backgrounds, this article reviewed the recent progress of soil geography including on soil genesis, soil morphology, soil classification, soil survey, and digital soil mapping. Future development of soil geography needs to expand the theoretical research, innovate the investigation technology, and simulate the spatiotemporal variations of soil. Furthermore, the main opportunities, trends, and challenges in the future were discussed.

Key words: soil genesis, soil classification, soil morphometric, soil survey, soil mapping, soil geography, progress and prospect