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2 - Environmental and Natural Resource Challenges in the Twenty-First Century

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  25 February 2021

Robert G. Woodmansee
Colorado State University
John C. Moore
Colorado State University
Dennis S. Ojima
Colorado State University
Laurie Richards
Colorado State University
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National and international agencies and organizations have published reports outlining critical natural resource, environmental, and societal challenges facing global inhabitants. These reports include the UN Sustainability Goals, Future Earth, Global Land Project, and the Resilience Alliance. Recognizing many of the topics listed in these reports are broad and aspirational, the authors of this chapter have disaggregated many topics into research and management challenges for which the systems ecology paradigm is well suited. Disaggregation is based on challenges at different spatial hierarchical scales: organisms/populations; ecological sites; landscapes; small regions/watersheds; regions/nations; continents; and the globe. Emphasis is placed on research needs at landscape and larger hierarchical levels. Biophysical knowledge acquired during the past 50 years about organism/population and ecological site levels is available now to better manage ecosystems and natural resources. However, research blending the ecosystem knowledge base with behavioral, learning, organizational, and marketing sciences is vitally needed to affect management practice change at scales where people manage land and waters. The goal is to engage managers, policy makers, thought leaders, and concerned citizens to resolve critical problems and adopt best management practices to meet current and future environmental challenges (e.g., provision of ecosystem services and climate change effects on ecosystem).

Natural Resource Management Reimagined
Using the Systems Ecology Paradigm
, pp. 36 - 65
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2021

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