Integrating resilience thinking and optimisation for conservation

Joern Fischer, Garry D. Peterson, Toby A. Gardner, Line J. Gordon, Ioan Fazey, Thomas Elmqvist, Adam Felton, Carl Folke, Stephen Dovers

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    107 Citations (Scopus)


    Conservation strategies need to be both effective and efficient to be successful. To this end, two bodies of research should be integrated, namely ‘resilience thinking’ and ‘optimisation for conservation,’ both of which are highly policy relevant but to date have evolved largely separately. Resilience thinking provides an integrated perspective for analysis, emphasising the potential of nonlinear changes and the interdependency of social and ecological systems. By contrast, optimisation for conservation is an outcome-oriented tool that recognises resource scarcity and the need to make rational and transparent decisions. Here we propose that actively embedding optimisation analyses within a resilience-thinking framework could draw on the complementary strengths of the two bodies of work, thereby promoting cost-effective and enduring conservation outcomes.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)549-554
    Number of pages6
    JournalTrends in Ecology and Evolution
    Issue number10
    Publication statusPublished - Oct 2009


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