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Abstract: Agricultural resource survey and regional planning are among the basic and comprehensive long-term work of agricultural development. They have always been on the priority list of long-term national research plans since the founding of P. R. China. Agricultural survey was conducted three times at nation scale afterwards, which collected data on agricultural resources and planning from more than 2,108 counties (according to the administrative division in the early 1980s). The surveys achieved important findings on such aspects as the status quo of agricultural regional planning and helped formulate natural geographic atlas of the People's Republic of China. On this basis, various agricultural divisions and comprehensive plannings were carried out at national and regional scales (including county and township scales), which generated more than 80,000 reports and over 40,000 maps. This data set is unique in providing complete and systematic data on agricultural resources and regional planning in China. It contains a large amount of scientific information for tracing, rationally utilizing and monitoring agricultural resources, as well as for studying agricultural development strategies, establishing agricultural bases, developing agricultural areas, adjusting agricultural structures, and rationally distributing agricultural productivity. It is also vital for formulating and implementing agricultural development plans, protecting agricultural resources, tapping agricultural production potentials, rationally arranging agricultural resources, improving comprehensive agricultural productivity, and promoting sustainable development of agriculture and rural areas.
Keywords: agricultural resources; agricultural regional planning; scientific data; data sharing
|English title||A data set of agricultural resources and regional planning in China|
|Data corresponding author||Zou Jinqiu (email@example.com)|
|Data authors||Chen Youqi; Zou Jinqiu|
|Time range||1949 – 2016|
|Geographical scope||China (longitude & latitude: 352’ N – 5333’ N, 7340’’E – 1352’ E)|
|Data volume||1,263,748 MB|
|Data format||*.doc, *.pdf, *.xls, *.shp, etc.|
|Data service system||<http://region.agridata.cn/>;|
|Sources of funding||Special project of basic work of science and technology, "data integration and standardization for basic work of science and technology" (2013FY110900);|
Special project of international scientific and technological cooperation, “Joint research and development of the Internet of things platform on precision agriculture with an integration of aerospace-aviation-ground observation" (2014DFE10220);
Research on scientific data mining and utilization on Agricultural Resources and Regional Planning in China (720-36)
|Dataset composition||This data set consists of data in text, statistical and map formats. For the convenience of scientific management, the data set is made up of eight databases: ① Comprehensive agricultural zoning database; ② Agricultural physical regionalization database; ③ Agricultural technical measures database; ④ Agricultural sector division database; ⑤ Rural economic division database; ⑥ Other thematic zoning databases; ⑦ Agricultural zoning theory and method database; ⑧ Database for other information concerning agricultural zoning.|
Agricultural resource survey and regional planning are among the basic and comprehensive long-term work of agricultural development. They have always been on the priority list of long-term national research plans since the founding of P. R. China. Agricultural survey was conducted at national scale for three times afterwards. From 1953 to 1957, the Economic Planning Bureau of the Central Ministry of Agriculture was responsible for national agricultural planning. The planning departments of the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, together with the Agricultural Bureau of each major region, established corresponding agricultural planning administrations to specifically organize agricultural resource surveys and agricultural planning studies. This period was mainly focused on drafting agricultural physical regionalization and developing relevant methods. In 1963, the National Agricultural Science and Technology Work Conference was convened, where the State Council listed “agricultural natural resource survey and agricultural regional planning” on the top priority of its 10-Year National Agricultural Science and Technology Development Plan. In 1978, the National Science and Technology Conference was held, where the CPC Central Committee listed “nationwide agricultural natural resource survey and agricultural planning studies” on the top of the Key Science and Technology Research Project in its National Science and Technology Planning Outline for 1978 – 1985. In 1979, Document 36 of the State Council pointed out that the study of agricultural natural resources and agricultural planning was an important basic work for rational utilization of agricultural natural resources, development of agricultural production, establishment of scientific management, and realization of agricultural modernization; that all provinces, municipalities and autonomous regions must proceed actively, systematically and in a long-term manner; and that a National Agricultural Resource Survey and Regional Planning Committee would be established. Led by Wang Renzhong, then Chairman of the Committee and Vice Premier of the State Council, the State Agriculture Commission, together with the State Science and Technology Commission, the Ministry of Agriculture and other relevant ministries and commissions, organized provincial-, prefecture- and county-level planning departments and research institutes to carry out agricultural resource survey and regional planning nationwide by phases and in batches. Nearly one million people were mobilized to participate in the work, which obtained data of 2,108 counties (according to the administrative division in the early 1980s); major data covered the status quo of agricultural planning and the natural geographic atlas of the People's Republic of China. On this basis, various agricultural divisions and comprehensive plannings were carried out at national and regional scales (including county and township levels) . through which complete sets of statistics were obtained, including more than 80,000 reports and over 40,000 maps. This set of achievements were then submitted for assessment by the Scientific and Technological Achievements Evaluation Team of the National Agricultural Regional Planning Committee. A total of 12 first prizes, 52 second prizes and 229 third prizes were awarded. Among them, the Comprehensive Agricultural Plan of China won the first prize for National Scientific and Technological Progress.1
This data set is the only complete and systematic one recording agricultural resources and planning achievements in China. It provides a large amount of basic scientific information for tracing, rationally utilizing and monitoring agricultural resources, formulating agricultural development strategies, establishing agricultural bases, developing agricultural areas, adjusting agricultural structures, and rationally distributing productivity according to local conditions. It is also vital for formulating and implementing agricultural development plans, protecting agricultural resources, tapping agricultural production potentials, rationally arranging agricultural resources, improving comprehensive agricultural productivity, and promoting sustainable development of agriculture and rural areas.
With the emergence of new technologies such as spatial information technology and computer network technology, units of every level started to carry out resource informatization and sharing. In 2002, the National Informatization Leading Group issued "Guiding Opinions on China's E-Government Construction" (Zhong Ban Fa  No. 17 Document), which opened a new era of informatization development. Till now, China's information infrastructure has undergone tremendous changes. Various “golden” projects, together with the National Scientific Data Sharing Platform, were completed in succession. Particularly. the establishment of China’s National Agricultural Science Data Sharing Center has greatly improved the level of agricultural informatization in China.
Jointly funded by the Ministry of Agriculture and the Ministry of Science and Technology, the dataset of agricultural resources and regional planning was initiated in 2002. A platform for data collection and sharing was built by the Planning Data Sub-Center of the National Agricultural Science Data Sharing Center, which has become the largest platform of agricultural resources in China. At present, it hosts a total of 164,658 data entries stored in five major databases and 39 data sets, which are for long-term open access. With over 7,000 real-name registered users and more than 3,000 daily visits, the platform has produced good social benefits.
Most of the raw data on agricultural resources and regional planning in China are in the form of printed books. Some of them are stored in the Institute of Agricultural Resources and Regional Planning, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, while others are kept in provincial administrations for agricultural resources and regional planning. Figure 1 shows a collection of the books in the Agricultural Regional Planning Library of the Institute of Agricultural Resources and Regional Planning, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences.
Manual digitization and input was used to collect data from these printed sources. The database construction was carried out as part of the Fundamental Work and Platform Project funded by the Ministry of Science and Technology. Based on the types and status quo of required data, the Planning Data Sub-Center of the National Agricultural Science Data Center developed methods and technical processes for data collection.2 Figure 2 details the working method and processing flow.
Methods of data collection are as follows: firstly, we developed scientific standards for data entry and verification, classified the data and performed manual input; secondly, first and second reviews were conducted on the digitized data to ensure a text entry accuracy of over 99%, as well as a consistent layout format, and save them as WORD files; thirdly, tabular data were saved as WORD files and also exported into EXCEL sheets for convenience of data query and statistical analysis; fourthly, maps were saved as WORD files and also exported into SHP format after they were vectorized and given a correct projection and coordinates by using GIS software; fifthly, photos and multimedia data were saved separately in JPG or streaming media format; sixthly, the data collector submitted all the collected data to the database administrator. After the data administrator performed accuracy verification, a management software was used to establish metadata information of each valid data entry, including its source, quality and usage. The data were then stored in the database, published and shared on the platform: <http://region.agridata.cn/>. Users can access the platform through real-name registration for data (including metadata and data profile) query or browse.
The platform uses Oracle database software for data management, while ArcGIS software is used for system integration and development. The management system is a stand-alone version of the data analysis and utilization software. Developed based on the WebGIS model, the platform is networked for open access, as shown in Figure 3. In addition to data query and browse, users can request data download. The data administrator reviews the data confidentiality level and user information to reach a decision on users’ request, and download will be enabled upon approval.
The dataset contains 72,696 data records in total, including 28,151 text files, 31,371 statistical entries, 2,196 vector maps, 10,914 raster images, and 64 multimedia files. Each data record is organized and managed in the same mode: for each record, its data entity is saved in corresponding file formats. Text data are saved in doc, txt, pdf, etc.; statistical data are saved in dbf or *.xls format; map data are saved in *.shp format; raster data are saved in *.tif or *.img format, and so on. Complete metadata information is available for each file. Users first browse metadata information, check the designated time, abstract, keywords, precision, format and so forth of a data file, and request data download if appropriate.
After logging in, users enter query conditions to generate a list of results, as shown in Figure 4. A click on the data name will direct the user to corresponding metadata information.
Taking for example the data file “Comprehensive Development Plan for Agricultural Area in Henan Province.” Click on the data name, and metadata information of the file will pop up (Figure 5), including the Chinese name, keywords, summary, date generated, version, file language, production purpose, and owner of the data file, as well as metadata owner information, and so on.
After reviewing metadata information, users can see a “Data Request” command button next to “File Name” (Figure 5). A click of the button will direct the user to the download request page. A request will be processed within one working day. If it is approved, a message will pop up upon next-time log-in, where a download button is enabled, as shown in Figure 6.
In the process of data collection and database construction, a strict quality management standard was adopted. As Figure 7 shows, all the collected data underwent a rigorous first and second review process. After data entry, an error rate was calculate for each file, and errors were minimized to a rate below 0.1%. The rate was calculated from the proportion of typos (including punctuation and number errors) among a thousand characters; we also considered typographical and numerical errors in tabular data, projected coordinate and boundary errors in map data, file naming errors, and many more. Data from the paper books were digitized and entered by data collector 1, who then submitted them to data collector 2 for typesetting, error check and accuracy calculation; after preliminary compliance with the requirements, they were handed over to second investigator 3, who conducted quality control once more. After the error rate was confirmed to be below 0.1%, metadata information of each file was established. Establishment of the metadata should conform to the core metadata specification for agricultural science data.3 The data were then submitted to the data administrator.
We also considered errors of map data resulted from data projection and coordinate registration. In the process of vectorization, the data were required to be refined. Electronic maps should not be deformed and should be more than 500 points in a pixel. Data projection and coordinate registration were performed by using the GIS software. The number of corrected coordinate points was not less than 40. The digitized data were tracked to ensure that over 98% of the map locations and line features match the original; when the vector attribute was entered and established, the character error rate was required to be below 1%.
In short, this dataset underwent a rigorous quality assurance process. However, the data were produced relatively early – more than 90% were produced before 2000, and about 75% were formed in the 1980s. With continued construction and economic development over the past decades, some statistics might have been outdated, unable to describe the current situation in China, such as the status of its land use, arable land reserves, farming and disaster area, husbandry statistics, etc. In other words, this dataset describes China’s historical status which might not be used as current data for decision-making purposes.
This dataset is valuable for decision makings concerning agricultural production, including planning of modern agricultural parks, layout of advantageous agricultural products, adjustment of agricultural industrial structure and analysis of reserve resources. It is a collection of valuable historical data collected by China’s agricultural scientists under extraordinary circumstances, which has taken a lot of manpower and financial resources. Though constrained by resource survey methods, mapping techniques, quantitative evaluation models, among others, the dataset has a very high overall accuracy. Being the only one that accurately describes China's national conditions, this dataset should be given enough attention and protection.
This dataset can be used to analyze the historical status of agricultural resources in China. As an assemblage of the wisdom of older-generation scientists, it scientifically describes the distribution of various crops and other agricultural resources in the country. Under the premise that natural rules do not change greatly, these data retain their unique value.
However, with China’s social and economic development, some situations have changed. Hence, it is recommended that statistical data in this dataset are used only as historical data for comparative analysis. Planning maps can be used directly or after appropriate modification. Most of our data users feel that these data are still applicable to modern agricultural layout and zoning.
This dataset is under continuous updates. Especially as new technologies and approaches for “space-ground” information integration emerges, the volume of relevant data surges, and users can synthesize, fuse, assimilate, and mine data of multiple sources to extract the most valuable information.
This dataset was processed from raw data published in books and internal materials, whose authors included a number of zoning experts and agricultural managers. With funds from the Ministry of Agriculture and the Ministry of Science and Technology, we digitized these valuable scientific resources. As data processing did not involve data analysis, the quality of this dataset depends on that of its raw data. Principles and procedures of data sharing were handled by Prof. Chen Youqi and Dr. Zou Jinqiu from the Institute of Agricultural Resources and Regional Planning of Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences.
National Bureau of Agricultural Resources and Regional Planning, China Society of Agricultural Resources and Regional Planning, Institute of Agricultural Resources and Regional Planning, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences. 30 Years of Agricultural Resource Zoning in China. Beijing: China Agricultural Science and Technology Press, 2011: 1 – 30.
Ma H, Chen Y & Zou J. System design and construction for the Agricultural Planning Data Sub-Center of National Agricultural Science Data Sharing Center. Chinese Journal of Agricultural Resources and Regional Planning 31(2010): 75 – 80.
1. Chen Y & Zou J. A data set of agricultural resources and regional planning in China. Science Data Bank. DOI: 10.11922/sciencedb.539
How to cite this article
Chen Y & Zou J. A data set of agricultural resources and regional mapping in China. China Scientific Data 3(2018). DOI: 10.11922/csdata.2017.0008.zh