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Sustainability in forest management and a new role for resilience thinking
Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Ecology and Environmental Sciences.
2013 (English)In: Forest Ecology and Management, ISSN 0378-1127, Vol. 310, 416-427 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Forest management faces a substantial challenge with ever-more-pervasive anthropogenic impacts and growing demands on forests coupled with the increasing certainty of global change. If the capacity of forests to provide valued ecological goods and services in the future is to be maintained, new tools and approaches will be needed. Several approaches have been influential in dealing with sustainability challenges in forest management and forestry to date, two of the most notable being the ecosystem approach and adaptive management. Resilience-based approaches have now emerged as a new paradigm to deal with these challenges. This paper considers how resilience thinking might inform forest management by exploring its conceptual basis in comparison with the ecosystem approach and adaptive management as two earlier influences. We identify three novel conceptual contributions and outline some of the key challenges encountered when applying resilience thinking to the management of forests. Resilience thinking offers new conceptual contributions for dealing with large and uncertain changes, the relationships between social and ecological components of forest systems, and a new perspective on sustainability. However, there are several barriers to it informing forest management in a practical way, including means by which resilience can be measured and valued within a management context, and most importantly, how resilience can be maintained and enhanced within systems focused on resource production or service provision. Resilience thinking's contributions are largely conceptual at this stage and offer more in terms a problem-framing approach than analytical or practical tools. Decision-relevant, science-based, and solution-oriented approaches are required to tackle future forest management challenges. Resilience thinking, if developed to become more solution-orientated could offer a needed complement to current management paradigms.

(C) 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2013. Vol. 310, 416-427 p.
National Category
Forest Science
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-87189DOI: 10.1016/j.foreco.2013.08.033ISI: 000330601000043OAI: diva2:707618
Available from: 2014-03-25 Created: 2014-03-24 Last updated: 2014-03-25Bibliographically approved

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