Includes the social and ecological dimensions as a

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Includes the social and ecological dimensions as a joined or ‘coupled’ system Humans change the way grazing occurs in the savannah example o In particular, how do humans interrelate with ecosystems o And how does change threaten maintaining such system in desirable states Multiple Interacting systems - Each system locks into other socio-ecological systems - Operating at different scales (local, regional, national, global) - At different paces (slow or fast adaptive cycles) - With different levels of resilience Complex Adaptive Systems - Turning socio-ecological resilience paradigm into a wider perspective on development and environmental change - “resilience is the capacity to adapt and to thrive in the face of challenge” - Resilience entails the processes of o Learning to live with change and uncertainty o Nurturing diversity o Combining different types of knowledge for learning o Creating opportunity for self-organization towards social-ecological sustainability Panarchy - “all communities live in complex environments, where cross-scale relationships and self- organizing dynamics make understanding the impacts of and response to change difficult to predict.” - Uncertainty is a central feature of environmental change but also all aspects of life
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- Linear change is not the norm - Expect the unexpected (non-linear change) - Raises significant questions for planning and development - If we can only partly know the future, we can’t adequately plan for specific events - We have to plan to be adaptable Uncertainty and change - Resilience is about how much stress a system can absorb before its fundamental shifts into an altered state - Knowledge: what are the “tipping points” or “thresholds” that – if passed – push the system into a new and undesirable state o Questions of scale (local national, international processes) o Questions of time (short-term, medium and long-term effects) o A community with low resilience has thresholds that are easily passed o How do we build resilient communities Resilience policy approach - Resilience thinking in practice o Systems that have a higher capacity to adapt are superior to those that may be more productive o Systems that value diversity within both ecology and society have better resources to adapt o Top down, centralised systems tend to be more brittle than horizontally organised ones Political Ecology - Combines the concerns of political economy with those of ecology - Emergence in 1980s - Critique of perspectives that blamed rural peasantries for environmental degradation - “degradation is basically a problem of the misuse of land much of the problem results from the customs, value systems and attitudes of the people concerning grazing lands and livestock” - Understands the causes and impacts of environmental change by o Focusing upon the forms of access, control and representation over natural resources o Emphasises rational dimensions How vulnerability and security; abundance and scarcity; prosperity and marginalisation are linked -
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