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Resilience Thinking: Sustaining Ecosystems and People in a Changing World

Resilience Thinking: Sustaining Ecosystems and People in a Changing World

Paperback

By (author) Brian Walker, By (author) David Salt, Foreword by Walter V. Reid

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  • Publisher: Island Press
  • Format: Paperback | 192 pages
  • Dimensions: 155mm x 231mm x 10mm | 272g
  • Publication date: 22 August 2006
  • Publication City/Country: Washington
  • ISBN 10: 1597260932
  • ISBN 13: 9781597260930
  • Illustrations note: figures, photos, case studies, maps, boxes, glossary, index
  • Sales rank: 77,254

Product description

Increasingly, cracks are appearing in the capacity of communities, ecosystems, and landscapes to provide the goods and services that sustain our planet's well-being. The response from most quarters has been for "more of the same" that created the situation in the first place: more control, more intensification, and greater efficiency. "Resilience thinking" offers a different way of understanding the world and a new approach to managing resources. It embraces human and natural systems as complex entities continually adapting through cycles of change and seeks to understand the qualities of a system that must be maintained or enhanced in order to achieve sustainability. It explains why greater efficiency by itself cannot solve resource problems and offers a constructive alternative that opens up options rather than closing them down. In "Resilience Thinking", scientist Brian Walker and science writer David Salt present an accessible introduction to the emerging paradigm of resilience. The book arose out of appeals from colleagues in science and industry for a plainly written account of what resilience is all about and how a resilience approach differs from current practices. Rather than complicated theory, the book offers a conceptual overview along with five case studies of resilience thinking in the real world. It is an engaging and important work for anyone interested in managing risk in a complex world.

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Author information

Brian Walker is past chief of Australia's CSIRO Division of Wildlife and Ecology and is currently science program director of the Resilience Alliance. David Salt is a science writer and editor with 18 years' experience writing and producing popular science magazines and newsletters for a wide range of audiences.

Review quote

""Resilience Thinking" is an essential guidebook to a powerful new way of understanding our world--and of living resiliently within it--developed in recent decades by an international team of ecologists. With five clear and compelling case studies drawn from regions as diverse as Florida, Sweden, and Australia, this book shows how all highly adaptive systems--from ecologies to economies--go through regular cycles of growth, reorganization, and renewal and how our failures to understand the basic principles of resilience have often led to disaster. "Resilience Thinking" gives us the conceptual tools to help us cope with the bewildering surprises and challenges of our new century."--Thomas Homer-Dixon "Professor of political science, University of Toronto "