Literature Review

Emerging Framework of Urban Ecology, as Illustrated by the Baltimore Ecosystem Study

Authors: Pickett   (Uploaded by: Aly Bean)
"The findings suggest a broader range of structural and functional relationships than is often assumed for urban ecological systems. We address the relationships between social status and awareness of environmental problems, and between race and environmental hazard. We present patterns of species diversity, riparian function, and stream nitrate loading. In addition, we probe the suitability of land-use models, the diversity of soils, and the potential for urban carbon sequestration. Finally, we illustrate lags between social patterns and vegetation, the biogeochemistry of lawns, ecosystem nutrient retention, and social-biophysical feedbacks. These results suggest a framework for a theory of urban ecosystems.   [Edit this posting]
PDF icon Urban Ecology Baltimore Synthesis (Pickett et al. 2008)

Adaptive Comanagement for Building Resilience in Social–Ecological Systems

Authors: Olsson, Folke, Berkes   (Uploaded by: Aly Bean)
"We present... the development of adaptive comanagement systems, showing how local groups self-organize, learn, and actively adapt to and shape change with social networks that connect institutions and organizations across levels and scales and that facilitate information flows...The results suggest that the institutional and organizational landscapes should be approached as carefully as the ecological in order to clarify features that contribute to the resilience of social–ecological systems."   [Edit this posting]
PDF icon Adaptive Co-management (Olsson et al. 2004)

A conceptual template for integrative human–environment research

Authors: Newell   (Uploaded by: Aly Bean)
"..we describe a ‘conceptual template’ that comprises (a) a list of high-level concepts that capture the essential aspects of any significant human–environment problem, plus (b) broad lists of low-level basic concepts drawn from a range of disciplines. We suggest that a conceptual template like that presented here can provide strong support to the initial phases of integrative research programs."   [Edit this posting]
PDF icon Conceptual Template (Newell et al 2005)

Approaches to the study of urban ecosystems

Authors: Grimm, Redman   (Uploaded by: Aly Bean)
"In this large-scale project, biological, physical, and social scientists are working together to study the structure and function of the urban ecosystem, to assess the effects of urban development on surrounding agricultural and desert lands, and to study the relationship and feedbacks between human decisions and ecological processes.Our interdisciplinary investigations into the relationship between land-use decisions and ecological conse-quences in the rapidly growing urban environment of Phoenix are of broad relevance for the study of socialecological systems and cites in particular."   [Edit this posting]
PDF icon Urban Ecosystems

The Value of Valuing Nature

Authors: Adams  
[ Adams. The Value of Valuing Nature. 2014. Science 346 (6209): 549-551. ] Adams finds several challenges associated with the valuation of nature via ecosystem services: the unclear link between ecosystem processes and ecosystem services, unclear valuation of ecosystem services, and unclear links between ecosystem services and human well-being. She concludes that, due to these challenges, ecosystem services assessments will not always end in conservationist outcomes, and instead conservation should be viewed as an ultimately political decision.   [Edit this posting]

Next steps for citizen science

Authors: Bonney  
[ Bonney, R. et al. 2015. Next steps for citizen science. Science, March 17. ] Bonney et al. set out an agenda to maximize the utility of “citizen science” – the use of volunteers in the collection, categorization, transcription, or analysis of scientific data. They argue that, when properly applied, citizen science can be a vital tool in expanding research frontiers across every scientific discipline.   [Edit this posting]

Dimensions of Civic Science

Authors: Clark, Illman  
[ Clark F. and D. Illman. 2001. Dimensions of Civic Science. Science Communication: 23 (1): 5-27. ] Clark and Illman provide a review of the variable uses of the term “civic scientist” – broadly, a scientist who communicates with and engages the public on scientific topics. They provide a characterization of five major modes of citizen-scientist communication, and lay out the different characteristics, goals and outcomes of these interactions.   [Edit this posting]

Resilience thinking: integrating resilience, adaptability, and transformability

Authors: Folke  
[ Folke, C. et al. 2010. Resilience thinking: integrating resilience, adaptability, and transformability. Ecology and Society 15(4): 20. ] Folke et al. address the concept of resilience in Socio-Ecological Systems (SES) – the tendency of an SES to account for change while still remaining within a stability threshold. They break resilience into three subcategories: persistence, adaptability, and transformability, addressing each of these and their implications in turn.   [Edit this posting]

Amateur experts

Authors: Gura  
[ Gura, T. 2013. Amateur experts. Nature, 496: 259-60. ] Gura lays out the promises and pitfalls of "citizen science" – the engagement of members of the public in the data collection and analysis process. She argues that one of the primary challenges in citizen science research design is recruiting volunteers and keeping them engaged in the process, but when properly applied it allows researchers to not only accomplish research goals but also to interact with and engage the general public.   [Edit this posting]

The Future of Citizen Science

Authors: Mueller, Tippins, Bryan  
[ Mueller, M. et al. 2012. The Future of Citizen Science. Democracy and Education Vol. 20. Article 1. ] Mueller, Tippins and Bryan focus on the impact of citizen science both on scientific research and on the general public, particularly its impact on children and schools. They argue that a more diverse, open and democratic citizen science approach can better address both the concerns of the community and extant environmental problems, while also better engaging citizens into the conservation process.   [Edit this posting]

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