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Recent Scientific Papers


Ecology and Society 

A journal of integrative science for resilience and sustainability
Ecology and Society Current Table of Contents
The twenty most current aticles published.
Iron triangles and subsidies: understanding the long-term role of the government on Swedish commercial fisheries
08. November 2019 Hentati-Sundberg, J., Fryers Hellquist, K., Duit, A. Research
Many natural resources have degraded and collapsed despite being managed under rigorous institutional frameworks set up to ensure rational exploitation. Path dependency of dysfunction institutions has been suggested as an explanation for such undesired outcomes. We explore the role of path dependency in natural resource management by studying a 100-year evolution of Swedish fisheries. We rely on three main types of original longitudinal data collected for the period 1914–2016: (A) policy documents, (B) government spending on management and subsidies, and (C) catch and fleet data. Our...
A framework to assess integration in flood risk management: implications for governance, policy, and practice
06. November 2019 Cumiskey, L., Priest, S. J., Klijn, F., Juntti, M. Research
Over decades the concept of integration has been promoted to enhance alignment between policy domains, and to manage trade-offs and maximize synergies across management practices. Integrated approaches have the potential to enable better outcomes for flood risk management (FRM) and society as a whole. However, achieving integration in practice is a recurring challenge, especially for FRM where multiple actors need to work together across fragmented policy domains. To disentangle this complexity of integration, a framework is proposed for assessing integration and identifying different...
Methods for understanding social-ecological systems: a review of place-based studies
05. November 2019 De Vos, A., Biggs, R., Preiser, R. Research
In recent years, social-ecological systems (SES) have emerged as a prominent analytical framing with which to investigate pressing sustainability issues associated with the Anthropocene era. Despite the growth of SES research, the lack of a delineated set of methods commonly contributes to disorientation for those entering into a field where methodological pluralism is the norm. We conduct a review of SES research, focusing particularly on methods used in this field. Our results reflect the rapid growth in SES research relative to other publications in relevant subject areas, and suggest a...
Institutions and the resilience of biobased production systems: the historical case of livestock intensification in the Netherlands
31. Oktober 2019 Termeer, C. J. A. M., Feindt, P. H., Karpouzoglou, T., Poppe, K. J., Hofstede, G., Kramer, K., Ge, L., Mathijs, E., Meuwissen, M. P. M. Synthesis
Disconnects between farming and urban systems are widely seen as impairing the resilience of biobased production systems (BBPSs). However, the institutional mechanisms that underlie these resilience problems are not well understood. In this explorative paper, which integrates elements from institutional and resilience theory, we develop a framework to analyze how institutionally shaped patterns of connects and disconnects affect the resilience of BBPs along the dimensions of robustness, adaptability, and transformability. This framework is applied to the historical case of pig livestock...
Exploring and expanding transdisciplinary research for sustainable and just natural resource management
31. Oktober 2019 Wolff, M. G., Cockburn, J. J., De Wet, C., Carlos Bezerra, J., Weaver, M. J. T., Finca, A., De Vos, A., Ralekhetla, M. M., Libala, N., Mkabile, Q. B., Odume, O. Nelson, Palmer, C. G. Research
Transdisciplinarity is gaining acceptance in sustainability science research as an approach to work across disparate types of knowledge and practices in order to tackle complex social-ecological problems. On paper, transdisciplinarity appears to be substantially helpful, but in practice, participants may remain voiceless and disadvantaged. In this paper, we retrospectively investigate four case studies using recent design principles for transdisciplinary research, to explore a deeper understanding of the practical successes and failures of transdisciplinary research engagement. We show...
Fostering urban transformations in Latin America: lessons around the ecological management of an urban stream in coproduction with a social movement (Buenos Aires, Argentina)
31. Oktober 2019 Graziano, M., De Groot, G. Stefan?a, Pilato, L. Daniela, S?nchez, M. Laura, Izaguirre, I., Pizarro, H. N. Research
Collaborative community-based approaches are proposed as a way to overcome the difficulties exerted by a broad range of social-ecological traps that emerge at the reconfiguration of social-ecological systems onto sustainable paths. Despite this, a deep examination of the social-ecological processes and interactions that constrain these approaches in different urban contexts is still necessary to improve their success. Latin American countries have institutional, political, and social characteristics that could constrain the pathways to sustainability in different ways from countries of the...
An indicator framework to support comprehensive approaches to sustainable fisheries management
30. Oktober 2019 Angel, E., Edwards, D. N., Hawkshaw, S., Wor, C., Parlee, C. E. Research
Indicator-based frameworks for assessing the sustainability of commercial fisheries have become well-established in the consumer sector. Within fisheries management, there are only a few jurisdictions, notably Australia, where sustainability frameworks are regularly used across the full spectrum of management functions, including planning, decision making, and evaluation. In Canada, a “sustainable fisheries framework” has been proposed but implementation has been limited to date. The Canadian Fisheries Research Network (CFRN), a six-year collaboration between Fisheries and...
Recovery planning in a dynamic system: integrating uncertainty into a decision support tool for an endangered songbird
29. Oktober 2019 Stanton, J. C., Marek, J., Hall, L. S., Kus, B. E., Alvarado, A., Orr, B. K., Morrissette, E., Riege, L., Thogmartin, W. E. Research
Along the Santa Clara River in California, populations of the federally and state-listed Least Bell's Vireo (Vireo bellii pusillus) are recovering from near extirpation. Habitat protection and restoration, as well as controlling rates of brood parasitism, are thought to be the primary drivers of this recovery. Continuing successful management of this population faces multiple challenges due to the highly dynamic and unpredictable nature of the system, lack of clearly defined and measurable recovery criteria, parametric and stochastic uncertainty, and data limitations. Many of these...
Strong historical and ongoing indigenous marine governance in the northeast Pacific Ocean: a case study of the Kitasoo/Xai’xais First Nation
28. Oktober 2019 Ban, N., Wilson, E., Neasloss, D. Research
Indigenous marine governance is increasingly recognized as having a crucial role in marine management and conservation, yet most examples are from the tropical Pacific and Oceania. We showcase strong and ongoing marine governance by the Kitasoo/Xai’xais people of British Columbia, Canada. In partnership with the Kitasoo/Xai’xais Stewardship Authority, we synthesized information about marine governance by the Kitasoo/Xai’xais people as collated in their Heritage Database, a compilation of interviews and recordings with knowledge holders, traditional stories, and historical...
Factors influencing social demands of aquatic ecosystems
25. Oktober 2019 Flotemersch, J. E., Shattuck, S. M., Aho, K. B., Cox, C. E., Cairns, M. R. Synthesis
Aquatic ecosystems provide services essential to human health and economies. Therefore, resource management programs aim to ensure the sustainable flow of these services. Stakeholder engagement is often a critical tool in learning what services are of priority to the public and may be integral to the success of aquatic ecosystem management because public participation in planning and decision making can generate broader support, e.g., financial, intellectual, and labor, for the management plan. The collection of such information may even be statutorily mandated, such as in the Clean Water...
Working together: the roles of geographic proximity, homophilic organizational characteristics, and neighborhood context in civic stewardship collaboration networks in Philadelphia and New York City
22. Oktober 2019 Jasny, L., Johnson, M., Campbell, L. K., Svendsen, E., Redmond, J. Research
We examine networks of collaboration among civic environmental stewardship organizations in Philadelphia and New York City to understand which factors shape collaborative ties between organizations. Environmental issues in cities are increasingly complicated and often involve many actors, including citizens, governments, and organizations. Organizations frequently collaborate to tackle collective action problems related to environmental management. Here, we study two such networks collected as part of the U.S. Forest Service’s Stewardship Mapping and Assessment (STEW-MAP) project...
Better balancing the social and natural dimensions in sustainability research
21. Oktober 2019 Olsson, L., Ness, B. Guest Editorial
Quantitative decision support tools facilitate social-ecological alignment in community-based marine protected area design
21. Oktober 2019 Krueck, N. C., Abdurrahim, A. Yansyah, Adhuri, D. S., Mumby, P. J., Ross, H. Research
Marine protected areas (MPAs) are increasingly used to support both biodiversity conservation and fisheries management. However, MPA performance is likely to be compromised if people who depend on fishing are excluded from MPA design decision making. Participatory MPA design helps to address this problem by engaging local stakeholders in all critical decisions, including the total coverage, placement, and local size of no-take marine reserves. Here, we report the findings from a participatory MPA design project on Selayar Island, Indonesia, in which a community initiated collaborations...
Exploring natural capital using bibliometrics and social media data
21. Oktober 2019 Pan, Y., Vira, B. Research
Research and interest into natural capital, i.e., the stock of the world’s natural resources, is increasing as it links humans with nature within a social-ecological system, contributing to ecosystem sustainability. We collected publication data for 300 natural capital papers to explore academic networks and research trends. We used Twitter to collect 14,193 tweets about natural capital over nine months. Analyzing publication data shows three main research clusters, but few coauthorships between the clusters. The results show substantial international coauthorships, and the dominance...
Social-ecological trends: managing the vulnerability of coastal fishing communities
21. Oktober 2019 Silva, M. R. O., Pennino, M. G., Lopes, P. F. M. Research
The loss of biodiversity, including the collapse of fish stocks, affects the vulnerability of social-ecological systems (SESs) and threatens local livelihoods. Incorporating community-centered indicators and SES drivers and exposures of change into coastal management can help anticipate and mitigate human and/or coastal vulnerability. We have proposed a new index to measure the social-ecological vulnerability of coastal fishing communities (Index of Coastal Vulnerability [ICV]) based on species, ecosystem, and social indicators. The ICV varies from 0 (no vulnerability) to 1 (very high...
Brokers of relevance in National Park Service urban collaborative networks
21. Oktober 2019 Perry, E. E., Krymkowski, D. H., Manning, R. E. Research
Conservation agencies are increasingly tasked with furthering their relevance with the public, in addition to protecting the natural and cultural resources in their care. Relevance is imperative to sustaining and diversifying invested stewards of these resources and support for their continued protection. Collaborative networks among organizations sharing similar goals and diverse audiences can facilitate relevance by connecting conservation agencies to new partners, ideas, and audiences. In particular, brokers, or organizations connecting other organizations in these networks, may be well...
New pathways for governing food system transformations: a pluralistic practice-based futures approach using visioning, back-casting, and serious gaming
21. Oktober 2019 Mangnus, A. C., Vervoort, J. M., McGreevy, S. R., Ota, K., Rupprecht, C. D. D., Oga, M., Kobayashi, M. Research
The global environmental change that characterizes the Anthropocene poses a threat to food systems. Cities increasingly serve as the spaces where civil society, private actors, and local governments come together to strategize toward more sustainable food futures and experiment with new forms of food governance. However, much of the futures literature in the context of sustainability focuses on large-scale, global scenarios. These are important pieces of knowledge, but they often do not effect a change in local perspectives and practices. In this paper we respond to the need for novel...
Context matters: influence of organizational, environmental, and social factors on civic environmental stewardship group intensity
21. Oktober 2019 Johnson, M. L., Locke, D. H., Svendsen, E., Campbell, L. K., Westphal, L. M., Romolini, M., Grove, J. Research
Civic environmental stewardship groups actively take care of their local environment and are known to work in urban contexts. Research on the geographies of this urban environmental stewardship is young. Understanding where stewardship groups work and the associated organizational and neighborhood contexts advances the understanding of the environmental outcomes of stewardship efforts. We examine the organizational, socioeconomic, and environmental contexts associated with the number of stewardship groups at the Census block group and neighborhood scales for four diverse U.S. cities...
Vulnerability of resource users in Louisiana’s oyster fishery to environmental hazards
30. September 2019 Humphries, A. T., Josephs, L. I., La Peyre, M. K., Hall, S., Dowty Beech, R. Research
Knowledge of vulnerability provides the foundation for developing actions that minimize impacts on people while maximizing the sustainability of ecosystem goods and services. As a result, it is becoming increasingly important to determine how resource-dependent people are vulnerable to environmental hazards. This idea is particularly true in coastal Louisiana, USA, where the current era of rapid land loss has the potential to undermine oyster fisheries. However, little is known about how such environmental change might differentially affect resource users and stakeholders. We examined...
The hidden role of processors in an individual transferable quota fishery
27. September 2019 Edwards, D. N., Pinkerton, E. Research
The economically and culturally important Pacific halibut fishery in British Columbia, Canada, managed as an individual transferable quota fishery since 1993, has frequently been held up as an example of management best practices. This narrative of success has continued despite repeated warnings that there are serious problems with the fishery, including processors exerting ever greater control over the fishery, contrary to stated fisheries objectives. Administrative data from federal and provincial data sets were used to consider ownership and control in the halibut fishery, with a focus...