Abstract

I present a general mathematical modeling framework that can provide a foundation for the study of sustainability in social- ecological systems (SESs). Using basic principles from feedback control and a sequence of specific models from bioeconomics and economic growth, I outline several mathematical and empirical challenges associated with the study of sustainability of SESs. These challenges are categorized into three classes: (1) the social choice of performance measures, (2) uncertainty, and (3) collective action. Finally, I present some opportunities for combining stylized dynamical systems models with empirical data on human behavior and biophysical systems to address practical challenges for the design of effective governance regimes (policy feedbacks) for highly uncertain natural resource systems.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)259-280
Number of pages22
JournalBulletin of Mathematical Biology
Volume77
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 2014

Fingerprint

social sustainability
human behavior
Human Behavior
Ecosystem
Sustainable development
sustainability
collective action
Feedback
bioeconomics
Economic Development
Sustainability
Natural resources
governance
economic development
natural resources
Uncertainty
Feedback control
economic growth
Dynamical systems
mathematical models

Keywords

  • Bioeconomic models
  • Design methodology
  • Economic growth models
  • Governance
  • Natural resources
  • Robust control

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Immunology
  • Mathematics(all)
  • Computational Theory and Mathematics
  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Pharmacology

Cite this

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title = "Understanding the Dynamics of Sustainable Social-Ecological Systems: Human Behavior, Institutions, and Regulatory Feedback Networks",
abstract = "I present a general mathematical modeling framework that can provide a foundation for the study of sustainability in social- ecological systems (SESs). Using basic principles from feedback control and a sequence of specific models from bioeconomics and economic growth, I outline several mathematical and empirical challenges associated with the study of sustainability of SESs. These challenges are categorized into three classes: (1) the social choice of performance measures, (2) uncertainty, and (3) collective action. Finally, I present some opportunities for combining stylized dynamical systems models with empirical data on human behavior and biophysical systems to address practical challenges for the design of effective governance regimes (policy feedbacks) for highly uncertain natural resource systems.",
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