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Adaptation to changing water resource availability in Northern India with respect to Himalayan Glacier retreat and changing monsoons using participatory approaches
Bhadwal, S. ; Groot, A.M.E. ; Balakrishnan, S. ; Nair, S. ; Ghosh, S. ; Lingaraj, G.J. ; Terwisscha Van Scheltinga, C.T.H.M. ; Bhave, A. ; Siderius, C. - \ 2013
Science of the Total Environment 468-469 (2013)Suppl.1. - ISSN 0048-9697 - p. S152 - S161.
climate-change - management - governance - multilevel - scales
Changes in rainfall patterns and temperatures are likely to affect water resources in India. Also, changes in the extreme events will have direct implications on life and property. Adapting to the adverse effects of climate change becomes critical to avoid huge material and immaterial damages. This paper discusses the use of a multi-level and participatory approach to develop adaptation options to deal with climate related risks in a manner that contributes to stakeholder engagement, understanding of the risks, identification of the adaptation responses as well as its prioritization for risk reduction. It highlights the importance of involving stakeholders from multiple levels as each level corresponds with different priorities in adaptation options.
Streetscape greenery and health: Stress, social cohesion and physical activity as mediators
Vries, S. de; Dillen, S.M.E. van; Groenewegen, P.P. ; Spreeuwenberg, P. - \ 2013
Social Science and Medicine 94 (2013). - ISSN 0277-9536 - p. 26 - 33.
mental-health - natural environments - possible mechanism - perceived stress - open space - walking - adults - associations - determinants - multilevel
Several studies have shown a positive relationship between local greenspace availability and residents' health, which may offer opportunities for health improvement. This study focuses on three mechanisms through which greenery might exert its positive effect on health: stress reduction, stimulating physical activity and facilitating social cohesion. Knowledge on mechanisms helps to identify which type of greenspace is most effective in generating health benefits. In eighty neighbourhoods in four Dutch cities data on quantity and quality of streetscape greenery were collected by observations. Data on self-reported health and proposed mediators were obtained for adults by mail questionnaires (N = 1641). Multilevel regression analyses, controlling for socio-demographic characteristics, revealed that both quantity and quality of streetscape greenery were related to perceived general health, acute health-related complaints, and mental health. Relationships were generally stronger for quality than for quantity. Stress and social cohesion were the strongest mediators. Total physical activity was not a mediator. Physical activity that could be undertaken in the public space (green activity) was, but less so than stress and social cohesion. With all three mediators included in the analysis, complete mediation could statistically be proven in five out of six cases. In these analyses the contribution of green activity was often not significant. The possibility that the effect of green activity is mediated by stress and social cohesion, rather than that it has a direct health effect, is discussed.
Ex Ante Scale Dynamics Analysis in the Policy Debate on Sustainable Biofuels in Mozambique
Schut, M. ; Leeuwis, C. ; Paassen, A. van - \ 2013
Ecology and Society 18 (2013)1. - ISSN 1708-3087 - 16 p.
governance - environment - information - multilevel - mismatches - systems - claims
In this paper, we explore how ex ante scale dynamics analysis can contribute to better understanding of interactions between scales and levels, and how these interactions influence solution space in policy processes. In so doing, we address opportunities and challenges of conducting ex ante scale dynamics analysis as part of an action-oriented social science research approach that seeks to enhance its contribution to more scale-sensitive policy development. The policy debate on sustainable biofuels in Mozambique provides the empirical context in which we analyze interactions across administrative, institutional, and economic scales and levels, and how these interactions influence the space in which policy solutions can be explored and designed. On the basis of the analysis, we conclude that ex ante scale dynamics analysis can contribute to: (1) increasing awareness of interactions between scales and levels, and their implications for policy, (2) identifying immediate and potential matches and mismatches between scales and levels, and developing (adaptive) capacity to address them, and (3) identifying stakeholders and their scale- and level-related interests that can provide the basis for collaborative multi-stakeholder learning. Consequently, ex ante scale dynamics analysis can provide an important contribution to balancing and harmonizing interactions across different scales and levels, from which innovative and scale-sensitive policy responses can emerge. As part of an action-oriented, social science research approach, careful attention needs to be paid to processes of scale and level inclusion and exclusion when conducting scale dynamics analysis.
Exploring dimensions, scales, and cross-scale dynamics from the perspectives of change agents in social-ecological systems
Vervoort, J.M. ; Rutting, L. ; Kok, K. ; Hermans, F.L.P. ; Veldkamp, A. ; Bregt, A.K. ; Lammeren, R.J.A. van - \ 2012
Ecology and Society 17 (2012)4. - ISSN 1708-3087
governance - innovation - management - multilevel - technologies - environment - resilience - mismatches - leadership - knowledge
Issues of scale play a crucial role in the governance of social–ecological systems. Yet, attempts to bridge interdisciplinary perspectives on the role of scale have thus far largely been limited to the science arena. This study has extended the scale vocabulary to allow for the inclusion of practice-based perspectives on scale. We introduced “dimensions,” used to describe the bare aspects of phenomena, such as time, space, and power, structured by scales and levels. We argued that this extension allows for a clearer understanding of the diversity of dimensions and scales that can be used to explore social–ecological systems. We used this scale vocabulary in a practical case study to elicit perspectives on dimensions, scales, and cross-dimensional dynamics from change agents in Dutch social–ecological systems. Through a visual interview method based in the extended scale vocabulary, our participants identified a large diversity of dimensions they saw as instrumental to understanding insights and lessons about effecting systems change. These dimensions were framed by a large number of scales to describe cross-dimensional interactions. The results illustrate the value of practice-based perspectives for the development of scale theory. We also argue that the introduction of dimensions in the scale vocabulary is useful for clarifying scale theory aimed at linking different disciplines and sectors, and that the framework and methods based on it can also provide clarity for practical scale challenges.
Scale and Governance: Conceptual Considerations and Practical Implications
Kok, K. ; Veldkamp, T. - \ 2011
Ecology and Society 16 (2011)2. - ISSN 1708-3087
adaptive governance - biodiversity - multilevel - conservation - environment - management - scenarios - dynamics - systems
Policies have many unforeseen impacts on social-ecological systems at different levels of spatial and temporal scales. Partly because of this, both scale and governance have been and continue to be hotly debated and studied topics within many scientific disciplines. Although there are two distinct vocabularies, both communities seem to be struggling to come to terms with a shift that has common elements. This special feature has two types of contributions, three scoping papers, providing a state-of-the-art overview of the conceptual discussion, and six case study papers that set out to deal with the practicalities of combining scale and governance. The scoping papers strongly indicate that using the notion of complex systems, specifically the social-ecological system, is needed to improve the understanding of scale and governance. They furthermore confirm that both communities are shifting. Additionally, the papers show several promising ways forward to link scale and governance, even though they differ in their suggestions on most important courses of action and research agendas. The case study papers show that conceptual advances have not been taken up to their full extent in practice. Importantly, none of the papers is being very specific on the definition of the term governance. Additionally, most attention is given to spatial, temporal, and jurisdictional scales, largely ignoring, for example, network and knowledge scales. What is urgently needed are more case study papers that explicitly make use of the conceptual literature and through that attempt to link scale and governance. Ultimately, there is a challenge to more effectively include nonscientists in the debate. A transdisciplinary arena is required where the concepts of scale and governance are framed such that a broad variety of stakeholders can join the debate and/or the decision making process.
Do scale frames matter? Scale frame mismatches in the decision making process of a 'mega farm' in a small Dutch village
Lieshout, M. van; Dewulf, A. ; Aarts, M.N.C. ; Termeer, C.J.A.M. - \ 2011
Ecology and Society 16 (2011)1. - ISSN 1708-3087 - p. 38 - 38.
resource-management - governance - construction - multilevel - conflict - systems
Scale issues are an increasingly important feature of complex sustainability issues, but they are mostly taken for granted in policy processes. However, the scale at which a problem is defined as well as the scale at which it should be solved are potentially contentious issues. The framing of a problem as a local, regional, or global problem is not without consequences and influences processes of inclusion and exclusion. Little is known about the ways actors frame scales and the effect of different scale frames on decision making processes. This paper addresses the questions that different scale frames actors use and what the implications of scale frames are for policy processes. It does so by analyzing the scale frames deployed by different actors on the establishment of a so-called new mixed company or mega farm and the related decision making process in a Dutch municipality. We find that actors deploy different and conflicting scale frames, leading to scale frame mismatches. We conclude that scale frame mismatches play an important role in the stagnation of the decision making process
Databases, scaling practices, and the globalization of biodiversity
Turnhout, E. ; Boonman-Berson, S.H. - \ 2011
Ecology and Society 16 (2011)1. - ISSN 1708-3087 - p. 35 - 35.
environmental governance - politics - construction - perspective - multilevel
Since the Convention on Biological Diversity in 1992, biodiversity has become an important topic for scientific research. Much of this research is focused on measuring and mapping the current state of biodiversity, in terms of which species are present at which places and in which abundance, and making extrapolations and future projections, that is, determining the trends. Biodiversity databases are crucial components of these activities because they store information about biodiversity and make it digitally available. Useful biodiversity databases require data that are reliable, standardized, and fit for up-scaling. This paper uses material from the EBONE-project (European Biodiversity Observation Network) to illustrate how biodiversity databases are constructed, how data are negotiated and scaled, and how biodiversity is globalized. The findings show a continuous interplay between scientific ideals related to objectivity and pragmatic considerations related to feasibility and data availability. Statistics was a crucial feature of the discussions. It also proved to be the main device in up-scaling the data. The material presented shows that biodiversity is approached in an abstract, quantitative, and technical way, disconnected from the species and habitats that make up biodiversity and the people involved in collecting the data. Globalizing biodiversity involves decontextualization and standardization. This paper argues that while this is important if the results of projects like EBONE are to be usable in different contexts, there is a risk involved as it may lead to the alienation from the organizations and volunteers who collect the data upon which these projects rely