What Is a Geographic Factor?

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Geographic factors are circumstances associated with a physical location that affect humans living within a specific area. Behavior, health, beliefs, income and education are examples of factors that can be affected by geography.

The notion of a geographic effect on human life is called geographic determinism. This theory holds that characteristics of particular cultures are affected by conditions specific to a location. The theory addresses the impact of localized conditions on political, economic and social aspects of a society. The theory was first described in the early 1900s by Yale professor Ellsworth Huntington as it pertained to the Roman Empire. A regional drought negatively affected agriculture, and the resulting lack of food contributed to the collapse of the empire.