The sector approach to analysis of a site is a practical and graphically clear way of visualizing conditions. We try to identify the geographic sectors of all wild energies and elements entering or having an effect on the site using sector analysis. Once the sectors are identified we then determine methods to enhance or deter their impact.

Typically, we would plot the wild energies associated with sun, wind and air corridors, water, storms and fire. We might then go on to look at wildlife, insects, invasive plants and other natural system elements. Finally, we may examine vehicular and pedestrian access, noise, smells, views and other human forces. Sector analysis provides a powerful design tool because it is geographically and visually related to the actual site. It is one of the primary drawings we would use in determination of land uses and the placement and relationships of elements.

Sector analysis may also be used in evaluation of design alternatives. Various potential design arrangements may be examined to see how well each responds to the forces identified in the sectors.

A sector analysis might look like this:


 from: Permaculture, pg. 54