The 43rd RIHN Seminar

The43rd RIHN Seminar will be held on the 7th June. We look forward to seeing you there.

Date: 7th June, 2010
Time: 1:30 p.m. -

RIHN Lecture Hall (Access)

Title: “Problems with integrating social and ecological processes in a unified modeling framework: A case study on the drivers of landscape pattern”
Speaker: Dr. Steve McCauley
(Visiting Assistant Professor, Clark University
Adjunct Assistant Professor, Worcester Polytechnic Institute)
Language: English
“Problems with integrating social and ecological processes in a unified modeling framework: A case study on the drivers of landscape pattern”
Increased recognition of the strong role of human activity in shaping biomes and landscapes has led to efforts to create coupled socio-ecological models. However, the human-environment research community still wrestles with the question of whether social and ecological systems are sub-systems of a broader integrated system which can be analyzed through a unified modeling framework, or whether they are unique systems which require distinct theories and methodologies. This presentation addresses this epistemological question through a case study on the drivers of landscape pattern in Massachusetts, USA. The presentation reports on experiments using two models: a coupled socio-ecological model, which integrates human land use activities with biophysical variables in a spatially explicit ecological modeling framework; and a heterodox model framework in economic geography, which capture cross-scalar political and economic dimensions of social systems. The research has implications for understanding of landscape systems and other human-environment systems.
About Speaker:
Stephen McCauley is a human-environment geographer (Ph.D. Clark University, USA) interested in environmental governance and the transition to sustainability. His research uses a range of methods—including content analysis, interviewing, land use modeling and ecological modeling—to examine how governance structures, economic processes and biophysical dynamics affect resource use and landscape pattern. He has conducted research in a number of resource management contexts, including community forest management networks in northern Thailand and adaptive management strategies in coastal Vietnam. His current research examines sustainable land use initiatives in Massachusetts, USA, and energy policy in the US and China.
Dr. McCauley currently holds positions as Visiting Assistant Professor in the Philosophy Department at Clark University and Adjunct Assistant Professor in the International and Global Studies Division at Worcester Polytechnic Institute. Dr. McCauley also has minor degrees in economics and philosophy and has taught a range of environmental courses, including environmental ethics and physical geography.
NILES, Daniel (Assistant Professor, RIHN)

tel: +81-75-707-2452 fax: +81-75-707-2510