Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

New research shows how bridging organizations and effective networking can improve ecosystem mana

03.06.2009
The strength of a dedicated few

How do you get governments, businesses and citizens to work together to manage ecosystems? - You transform from an 'eco geek' into a modern leader and make sure that your project serves multiple objectives, says Lisen Schultz who June 4 will defend her thesis at Department of Systems Ecology, Stockholm University.

Based on interviews with dedicated practitioners behind successful conservation projects, her thesis presents new management practices that live up to the demands of today and that curbs the unsustainable tapping into the world's natural resources.

-- With an increasing number of people on the planet follows an equally increasing pressure on the natural resources we rely on. Sound ecosystem management therefore becomes increasingly important for societal development. These dedicated managers offer ground for optimism, says Lisen Schultz.

One example is the Swedish biosphere reserve Kristianstads Vattenrike - a former "water logged swamp" that has now been designated by UNESCO as a model for sustainable development and biodiversity conservation. Schultz's thesis analyzes how the dedicated work of a few individuals has mobilized local farmers, bird watchers, entrepreneurs and politicians to join forces in rendering the wetland an asset for the district of Kristianstad. This case study has then been compared to similar UNESCO-designated experiences elsewhere in the world. Unlike the more well-known World Heritage, the Biosphere Reserves are meant to protect biodiversity and encourage local development at the same time, by sustaining ecosystem services for human well-being.

-- Those who run these projects are often forced to work with limited resources and weak authority, despite the fact that they are managing areas of international recognition. Yet, many people succeed in making a difference. I have tried to understand how, says Lisen Schultz.

The results of her research show that those who succeed are as good at reading people as they are at reading nature itself: By first listening to the needs of potential partners, and then communicating an attractive vision for their project (which goes beyond the mere interest of nature conservation) these dedicated individuals are able to build trust and involve key stakeholders such as politicians, local associations, landowners and financiers. In many cases, they form so called bridging organizations that connect actors across scales and sectors.

Furthermore, they are recognized by their flexibility and drive for continuous learning. By synthesizing information from a multitude of sources and finding synergies between different interests, they have developed a trained eye in seizing golden opportunities be it chances of new funding, prospective new projects or similar. They also seem to be experts in detecting and preventing impending crises, such as negative environmental changes, conflicts, or changes in policy priorities.

-- Somehow, they manage to combine a firm vision with a flexible and learning-oriented approach to realizing it, says Lisen Schultz. Maybe, it sounds as if these dedicated individuals are super humans of another planet, but my impression is rather that they are humble, low-key people who simply have a strong drive to improve conditions for both people and nature, combined with an impressive ability to read ecological and social dynamics on various levels. It has been very inspiring to see that projects such as the one in Kristianstad are actually possible all over the world, be it Sweden or Venezuela, says Lisen Schultz.

For more information, please contact:
Lisen Schultz is a PhD student at the Department of Systems Ecology and affiliated to Stockholm Resilience Centre, Stockholm University, tel: +46 (0)702 888138, email: lisen@ecology.su.se

Sven-Erik Magnusson is the head of Biosfärkontoret in Kristianstad Vattenrike and is one of the interviewees in the study, tel: +46 (0)44 13 64 80, +46 (0)733 13 64 80, email: sven-erik.magnusson@kristianstad.se

Ellika Hermansson Török, press contact, Stockholm Resilience Centre, tel: +46 (0)73 707 85 47, email: ellika@stockholmresilience.su.se

Ellika Hermansson Török | idw
Further information:
http://www.vr.se

More articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation:

nachricht Dispersal of Fish Eggs by Water Birds – Just a Myth?
19.02.2018 | Universität Basel

nachricht Removing fossil fuel subsidies will not reduce CO2 emissions as much as hoped
08.02.2018 | International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA)

All articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: In best circles: First integrated circuit from self-assembled polymer

For the first time, a team of researchers at the Max-Planck Institute (MPI) for Polymer Research in Mainz, Germany, has succeeded in making an integrated circuit (IC) from just a monolayer of a semiconducting polymer via a bottom-up, self-assembly approach.

In the self-assembly process, the semiconducting polymer arranges itself into an ordered monolayer in a transistor. The transistors are binary switches used...

Im Focus: Demonstration of a single molecule piezoelectric effect

Breakthrough provides a new concept of the design of molecular motors, sensors and electricity generators at nanoscale

Researchers from the Institute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry of the CAS (IOCB Prague), Institute of Physics of the CAS (IP CAS) and Palacký University...

Im Focus: Hybrid optics bring color imaging using ultrathin metalenses into focus

For photographers and scientists, lenses are lifesavers. They reflect and refract light, making possible the imaging systems that drive discovery through the microscope and preserve history through cameras.

But today's glass-based lenses are bulky and resist miniaturization. Next-generation technologies, such as ultrathin cameras or tiny microscopes, require...

Im Focus: Stem cell divisions in the adult brain seen for the first time

Scientists from the University of Zurich have succeeded for the first time in tracking individual stem cells and their neuronal progeny over months within the intact adult brain. This study sheds light on how new neurons are produced throughout life.

The generation of new nerve cells was once thought to taper off at the end of embryonic development. However, recent research has shown that the adult brain...

Im Focus: Interference as a new method for cooling quantum devices

Theoretical physicists propose to use negative interference to control heat flow in quantum devices. Study published in Physical Review Letters

Quantum computer parts are sensitive and need to be cooled to very low temperatures. Their tiny size makes them particularly susceptible to a temperature...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

2nd International Conference on High Temperature Shape Memory Alloys (HTSMAs)

15.02.2018 | Event News

Aachen DC Grid Summit 2018

13.02.2018 | Event News

How Global Climate Policy Can Learn from the Energy Transition

12.02.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

MEMS chips get metatlenses

21.02.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

International team publishes roadmap to enhance radioresistance for space colonization

21.02.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

World's first solar fuels reactor for night passes test

21.02.2018 | Earth Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>