World Facts

What is a Region?

In geography, a region is a broad area that is distinguished by physical characteristics.

Regions are the areas widely divided by physical geography (physical characteristics), human geography (human impact characteristics), and environmental aspects (the interaction between the environment and humanity). These areas are marked by numerous unique properties which are distinct from the outside and homogenous inside. The atmospheric regions and hydrospheric regions include the areas covered by the climate above water masses and land. These geographical sub-regions and regions are described by their defined transitional boundaries while the law defines jurisdiction areas like national boundaries.

Global Regions

Global regions are distinguishable from space. The two major terrestrial environments which distinguish the global area include water and land. The most significant land regions on Earth are called continents, and the largest water region is called an ocean. Other areas which do not belong to these classifications include archipelagos which belongs to the littoral zones or the earthquake region as described in geology. Human history and its attempt to reduce a large area into a convenient regionalization for studying purposes help define continental regions. The definition of some continents includes a unique continental feature such as the Sahara or the Amazon basin which occupy a considerable percentage of their respective part. Continental regions are constructs created by the consideration of an efficient method of defining a large area. Furthermore, academic studies, the media, and our personal experiences help us understand the world.

Regional Geography

Regional geography is a unique field of geology which studies regions. The idea of regions is crucial and widely used by different branches of geography with each describing an area in regional terms. The Cultural-region is the term used in cultural geography; environmental geography uses ecoregion and bioregion in biogeography. In physical geography, zoogeography, ecology, environmental geography, and biogeography regions are based on numerous natural features like mountain ranges, national regions, biomes, isotopes, and soil types. With human geography, sub-regions and regions are described by ethnography. Every region has a unique immovable type of nature. The first one is the natural environment which includes climate and landform. The second is immovable-nature in every region is the physical elements built in the past. The last is the socio-cultural context which cannot be replaced even by the coming of new immigrants. Regional geography focuses on regions of different sizes on Earth. The primary aim of geography is to define and describe the characteristics of various areas on the planet with both natural and human elements. Regional geography also focuses on regionalization which includes all the proper methods used in space delimitation into regions.

Human Geography

Another branch of regional geography, which focuses on how humans interact with the environment, is human geography. Human geography focuses mainly on the study of processes and patterns which shape up human interaction with their surroundings. Human geography includes the political, human, social, economic, and cultural aspect of a region. Environmental geology links Human geography and physical landscape. Human geography is divided into numerous categories including demography, geopolitics, social geography, tourism geography, and ethnography among others. Human geography has further split regions into different fields which include:

1) Historical Region

Historical regions include the study of the history of humans and how it relates to areas and places. Historical region is the study of how districts and sites have evolved. These areas include places which had an ethnic, cultural, political, and linguistic basis regardless of the current borders. Historical regions are used as the delimitation for analyzing and studying the social development of a specific culture without referencing the contemporary social, political, and economic organizations.

2) Tourism Regions

Tourism areas are geographical areas which the government has set aside because of their shared environmental or cultural characteristics. The government names these places after a former or current geographic region or they create a unique name for tourism purposes. These names evoke an exceptional quality of the area and even suggest a consistent touring experience. To attract visitors these states, provinces and even administrative regions are carved-up into a tourism region. Some of the areas created by government for tourism purposes include the Lake District in the United Kingdom and Wine Country in California.

3) Religious Regions

At times a place associated with a particular religion can be named after the belief like Christendom. The Muslim World is the term used to refer to countries where the Islamic faith is dominant. Within some major religions, there are numerous defined regions. The Eastern Orthodox Church, Church of England, and the Roman Catholic Church determine their ecclesiastical towns using names like Parish, diocese, eparchy, and ecclesiastical provinces. The Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod divides the United States into 33 geographical districts. The Roman Catholic Church divided the United States into 32 Ecclesiastical areas.

4) Political Regions

In political geography, sectors are based on different governmental units including township, territories, sovereign states, provinces, and counties. Political areas are also divided into multiple multinational groupings like the European Union and NATO, among others. Other informally defined regions include Middle East, Western Europe, and the third world.

5) Military Regions

In the military, a region is the name of a formation which is larger than the army group but smaller than the army theater. Their size varies from one million to two million soldiers. An army theater consists of over two army regions. The field marshal and a full general command this formation in the United States. Due to the size of this group, the government rarely uses a region and the last time this military formation participated in a war was in the WWII.

6) Informal or Traditional Regions

The traditional territorial divisions of numerous countries are referred to as ‘’regions’’ in English. These units rarely form the basis of the current administrative division of these nations, but they help define and even delimit numerous local regional identities while creating a sense of belonging. Some of these traditional regions include Japan, Korea, Slovakia, Finland, and Norway.

7) Administrative Regions

The term ‘’region’’ is derived from the Latin word regio and different countries use this term as the official name of a sub-national entity. Some of these countries include Chile, Belgium, Chad, and England among other countries.

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