Front cover image for Panarchy : understanding transformations in human and natural systems

Panarchy : understanding transformations in human and natural systems

Creating institutions to meet the challenge of sustainability is arguably the most important task confronting society; it is also dauntingly complex. Ecological, economic, and social elements all play a role, but despite ongoing efforts, researchers have yet to succeed in integrating the various disciplines in a way that gives adequate representation to the insights of each. Panarchy, a term devised to describe evolving hierarchical systems with multiple interrelated elements, offers an important new framework for understanding and resolving this dilemma. Panarchy is the structure in which systems, including those of nature (e.g., forests) and of humans (e.g., capitalism), as well as combined human-natural systems (e.g., institutions that govern natural resource use such as the Forest Service), are interlinked in continual adaptive cycles of growth, accumulation, restructuring, and renewal. These transformational cycles take place at scales ranging from a drop of water to the biosphere, over periods from days to geologic epochs. By understanding these cycles and their scales, researchers can identify the points at which a system is capable of accepting positive change, and can use those leverage points to foster resilience and sustainability within the system
Print Book, English, ©2002
Island Press, Washington, DC, ©2002
xxiv, 507 pages, 2 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations (some color) ; 24 cm
9781559638562, 9781559638579, 1559638567, 1559638575
Online version:
In quest of a theory of adaptive change / C.S. Holling, Lance H. Gunderson, and Donald Ludwig
Resilience and adaptive cycles / C.S. Holling, and Lance H. Gunderson
Sustainability and panarchies / C.H. Holling, Lance H. Gunderson, and Garry D. Peterson
Why systems of people and nature are not just social and ecological systems / Frances Westley [and others]
Back to the future: ecosystem dynamics and local knowledge / Fikret Berkes and Carl Folke
The dynamics of political discourse in seeking sustainability / Lowell Pritchard, Jr. and Steven E. Sanderson
Collapse, learning, and renewal / Stephen R. Carpenter, William A. Brock and Donald Ludwig
Dynamics interaction of societies and ecosystems: linking theories from ecology, economy, and sociology / Marten Scheffer [and others]
A future of surprises / Marco A. Janssen
Resilience and sustainability: the economic analysis of nonlinear dynamic systems / William A. Brock, Karl-Göran Mäler and Charles Perrings
Resilient rangelands: adaptation in complex systems / Brian Walker and Nick Abel
Surprises and sustainability: cycles of renewal in the Everglades / Lance H. Gunderson, C.S. Holling, and Garry D. Peterson
The devil in the dynamics: adaptive management on the front lines / Frances Westley
Planning for resilience: scenarios, surprises, and branch points / Gilberto C. Gallopín
Discoveries for sustainable futures / C.S. Holling [and others]
Toward an integrative synthesis / Ralf Yorque [and others]
A model for ecosystems with alternative stable states
Optimizing social utility from lake use
Tax as a way to direct society
Collective action problems and their effect on political power