Baltimore Ecosystem Study Institute of Ecosystem Studies

2014 BES Annual Meeting Presentation and Poster Abstracts

A Social-Ecological Framework for Examining Governance of Natural Resources
Romolini, Michele
Co-Authors: R. Patrick Bixler, J. Morgan Grove

Abstract: Non-equilibrium ecology highlights the inherent dynamics and complexity of ecological systems, focusing on diverse factors operating at multiple spatial, organizational, and temporal scales. An important advance has been a "unified ecology" approach based upon different lenses and combinations of ecological analysis: organism, population, community, ecosystem, landscape, and macrosystems. We present a framework that uses these same ecological lenses to guide the examination of organizations and networks that compose natural resource governance systems. Specifically, this framework can be used to facilitate a systematic approach to the collection, analysis, and interpretation of network data in order to address natural resources governance as part of an integrated and complex social-ecological system. This framework has both prospective and evaluative applications, which we illustrate using an example of network governance research from Baltimore City, Maryland. We propose this framework as a new opportunity to advance both the study and practice of natural resource governance.