Urban transitions: On urban resilience and human-dominated ecosystems

Henrik Ernstson, Sander Van Der Leeuw, Charles Redman, Douglas J. Meffert, George Davis, Christine Alfsen, Thomas Elmqvist

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

238 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Urbanization is a global multidimensional process paired with increasing uncertainty due to climate change, migration of people, and changes in the capacity to sustain ecosystem services. This article lays a foundation for discussing transitions in urban governance, which enable cities to navigate change, build capacity to withstand shocks, and use experimentation and innovation in face of uncertainty. Using the three concrete case cities New Orleans, Cape Town, and Phoenixthe article analyzes thresholds and cross-scale interactions, and expands the scale at which urban resilience has been discussed by integrating the idea from geography that cities form part of "system of cities" (i.e., they cannot be seen as single entities). Based on this, the article argues that urban governance need to harness social networks of urban innovation to sustain ecosystem services, while nurturing discourses that situate the city as part of regional ecosystems. The article broadens the discussion on urban resilience while challenging resilience theory when addressing human-dominated ecosystems. Practical examples of harnessing urban innovation are presented, paired with an agenda for research and policy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)531-545
Number of pages15
JournalAmbio
Volume39
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2010

Fingerprint

Ecosystems
resilience
innovation
ecosystem
Innovation
uncertainty
governance
ecosystem service
urbanization
social network
climate change
town
Climate change
migration
geography
discourse
interaction
city
Uncertainty

Keywords

  • Cape Town
  • Cross-scale interactions
  • Ecosystem services
  • New Orleans
  • Phoenix
  • Social-ecological processes
  • Urban innovation
  • Urban resilience

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology
  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Environmental Chemistry

Cite this

Urban transitions : On urban resilience and human-dominated ecosystems. / Ernstson, Henrik; Van Der Leeuw, Sander; Redman, Charles; Meffert, Douglas J.; Davis, George; Alfsen, Christine; Elmqvist, Thomas.

In: Ambio, Vol. 39, No. 8, 12.2010, p. 531-545.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Ernstson, H, Van Der Leeuw, S, Redman, C, Meffert, DJ, Davis, G, Alfsen, C & Elmqvist, T 2010, 'Urban transitions: On urban resilience and human-dominated ecosystems', Ambio, vol. 39, no. 8, pp. 531-545. https://doi.org/10.1007/s13280-010-0081-9
Ernstson, Henrik ; Van Der Leeuw, Sander ; Redman, Charles ; Meffert, Douglas J. ; Davis, George ; Alfsen, Christine ; Elmqvist, Thomas. / Urban transitions : On urban resilience and human-dominated ecosystems. In: Ambio. 2010 ; Vol. 39, No. 8. pp. 531-545.
@article{845381545d8f4f2183bcfc36ce31ea6f,
title = "Urban transitions: On urban resilience and human-dominated ecosystems",
abstract = "Urbanization is a global multidimensional process paired with increasing uncertainty due to climate change, migration of people, and changes in the capacity to sustain ecosystem services. This article lays a foundation for discussing transitions in urban governance, which enable cities to navigate change, build capacity to withstand shocks, and use experimentation and innovation in face of uncertainty. Using the three concrete case cities New Orleans, Cape Town, and Phoenixthe article analyzes thresholds and cross-scale interactions, and expands the scale at which urban resilience has been discussed by integrating the idea from geography that cities form part of {"}system of cities{"} (i.e., they cannot be seen as single entities). Based on this, the article argues that urban governance need to harness social networks of urban innovation to sustain ecosystem services, while nurturing discourses that situate the city as part of regional ecosystems. The article broadens the discussion on urban resilience while challenging resilience theory when addressing human-dominated ecosystems. Practical examples of harnessing urban innovation are presented, paired with an agenda for research and policy.",
keywords = "Cape Town, Cross-scale interactions, Ecosystem services, New Orleans, Phoenix, Social-ecological processes, Urban innovation, Urban resilience",
author = "Henrik Ernstson and {Van Der Leeuw}, Sander and Charles Redman and Meffert, {Douglas J.} and George Davis and Christine Alfsen and Thomas Elmqvist",
year = "2010",
month = "12",
doi = "10.1007/s13280-010-0081-9",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "39",
pages = "531--545",
journal = "Ambio",
issn = "0044-7447",
publisher = "Allen Press Inc.",
number = "8",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Urban transitions

T2 - On urban resilience and human-dominated ecosystems

AU - Ernstson, Henrik

AU - Van Der Leeuw, Sander

AU - Redman, Charles

AU - Meffert, Douglas J.

AU - Davis, George

AU - Alfsen, Christine

AU - Elmqvist, Thomas

PY - 2010/12

Y1 - 2010/12

N2 - Urbanization is a global multidimensional process paired with increasing uncertainty due to climate change, migration of people, and changes in the capacity to sustain ecosystem services. This article lays a foundation for discussing transitions in urban governance, which enable cities to navigate change, build capacity to withstand shocks, and use experimentation and innovation in face of uncertainty. Using the three concrete case cities New Orleans, Cape Town, and Phoenixthe article analyzes thresholds and cross-scale interactions, and expands the scale at which urban resilience has been discussed by integrating the idea from geography that cities form part of "system of cities" (i.e., they cannot be seen as single entities). Based on this, the article argues that urban governance need to harness social networks of urban innovation to sustain ecosystem services, while nurturing discourses that situate the city as part of regional ecosystems. The article broadens the discussion on urban resilience while challenging resilience theory when addressing human-dominated ecosystems. Practical examples of harnessing urban innovation are presented, paired with an agenda for research and policy.

AB - Urbanization is a global multidimensional process paired with increasing uncertainty due to climate change, migration of people, and changes in the capacity to sustain ecosystem services. This article lays a foundation for discussing transitions in urban governance, which enable cities to navigate change, build capacity to withstand shocks, and use experimentation and innovation in face of uncertainty. Using the three concrete case cities New Orleans, Cape Town, and Phoenixthe article analyzes thresholds and cross-scale interactions, and expands the scale at which urban resilience has been discussed by integrating the idea from geography that cities form part of "system of cities" (i.e., they cannot be seen as single entities). Based on this, the article argues that urban governance need to harness social networks of urban innovation to sustain ecosystem services, while nurturing discourses that situate the city as part of regional ecosystems. The article broadens the discussion on urban resilience while challenging resilience theory when addressing human-dominated ecosystems. Practical examples of harnessing urban innovation are presented, paired with an agenda for research and policy.

KW - Cape Town

KW - Cross-scale interactions

KW - Ecosystem services

KW - New Orleans

KW - Phoenix

KW - Social-ecological processes

KW - Urban innovation

KW - Urban resilience

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=78149360951&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=78149360951&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1007/s13280-010-0081-9

DO - 10.1007/s13280-010-0081-9

M3 - Article

C2 - 21141773

AN - SCOPUS:78149360951

VL - 39

SP - 531

EP - 545

JO - Ambio

JF - Ambio

SN - 0044-7447

IS - 8

ER -