Monday, March 21, 2011


Poli Lucy Lin

 The development of theoretical ecosystem properties of resilience and its applications to social-ecological systems (SESs) are becoming increasingly important for the study of the human dimensions of global environmental change. Current studies on the resilience of SESs emphasize on developing frameworks for analyzing and organizing thinking of social-ecological systems. Theoretical and conceptual meaning of resilience in social-ecological systems is not well addressed. On the other hand, an urban system can be regarded as “coupled ecological-economic systems”, or SESs. The purpose of this paper is to address concept and to develop a framework for analyzing “urban resilience” from viewpoint of systems ecology. It contributes to current studies on SESs resilience.
From the ecological energetic perspective, the social/economic system in the “coupled ecological-economic systems” can be viewed as an open ecosystem which is far from equilibrium and self-organizes. Howard T. Odum, a systems ecologist, has proposed the maximum power principle is the mechanism of self-organization. During self-organization, system designs develop and prevail that maximize empower, energy transformation, and those uses that reinforce production and efficiency. Odum has introduced a general systems energy circuit language incorporating autocatalytic design and illustrating how the maximum power principle operates.
SESs resilience or urban resilience can be defined as the self-organization capacity of a social/economic system while undergoing ecosystem change so as to maintain its structures and functions. Therefore, on the basis of maximum power principle, “urban resilience” is further interpreted as a social/economic system’s capacity to draw low entropy energy and use it properly to maintain its structure. In addition to ecological energetic principles, urban resilience should be viewed from the systems perspective by analyzing the interactions of components in the ecological-economic systems to reflect the mechanism of urban resilience change. It is the change of natural ecosystem that will affect ecosystem functions and services, and further reduce the social/economic system’s self-regulatory capacity and its resilience. The critical processes and components affecting resilience of the urban system are autocatalysis and high quality energy storage with autocatalysis.

more about urban resilience:

Resilience meets architecture and urban planning

No comments:

Post a Comment