Regime shifts in a socio-ecological model of farmland abandonment

Figueiredo, Joana, and Pereira, Henrique M. (2011) Regime shifts in a socio-ecological model of farmland abandonment. Landscape Ecology, 26 (5). pp. 737-749.

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Abstract

We developed a mathematical model with two-way linked socio-ecological dynamics to study farmland abandonment and to understand the regimes shifts of this socio-ecological system. The model considers that migration is a collective behavior socio-economically driven and that the ecosystem is dynamic. The model identifies equilibria that vary from mass migration, farmland abandonment, and forest regeneration, to no migration and forest eradication; partial migration and/or coexistence of farmland and forest also constitute possible equilibria. Overall, the model reflects farmland abandonment processes observed in the field and illustrates the importance of the complex interlinked mechanisms between the social and ecological systems determining farmland abandonment, that are not evident when approached independently. The model dynamics show that the hysteresis on the social dynamics renders regimes shifts difficult to reverse, and that this difficulty is accentuated when considering the ecological system dynamic. Similar models could be applied to other socio-ecological systems to help their management.

Item ID: 17216
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1572-9761
Keywords: collective behavior; deforestation; forest regeneration; human decision; hysteresis; linked social-ecological system; migration; threshold; rural exodus; utility
Date Deposited: 08 Jun 2011 05:33
FoR Codes: 05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0501 Ecological Applications > 050104 Landscape Ecology @ 40%
07 AGRICULTURAL AND VETERINARY SCIENCES > 0701 Agriculture, Land and Farm Management > 070106 Farm Management, Rural Management and Agribusiness @ 20%
14 ECONOMICS > 1403 Econometrics > 140303 Economic Models and Forecasting @ 40%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9605 Ecosystem Assessment and Management > 960503 Ecosystem Assessment and Management of Coastal and Estuarine Environments @ 100%
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