The programme on ecosystem change and society (PECS)–a decade of deepening social-ecological research through a place-based focus

Norström, Albert V., Agarwal, Bin, Balvanera, Patricia, Baptiste, Brigitte, Bennett, Elena M., Brondízio, Eduardo, Biggs, Reinette, Campbell, Bruce, Carpenter, Stephen R., Castilla, Juan Carlos, Castro, Antonio J., Cramer, Wolfgang, Cumming, Graeme S., Felipe-lucia, María, Fischer, Joern, Folke, Carl, DeFries, Ruth, Gelcich, Stefan, Groth, Juliane, Ifejika Speranza, Chinwe, Jacobs, Sander, Hofmann, Johanna, Hughes, Terry P., Lam, David P.M., Loos, Jacqueline, Manyani, Amanda, Martín-López, Berta, Meacham, Megan, Moersberger, Hannah, Nagendra, Harini, Pereira, Laura, Polasky, Stephen, Schoon, Michael, Schultz, Lisen, Selomane, Odirilwe, and Spierenburg, Marja (2022) The programme on ecosystem change and society (PECS)–a decade of deepening social-ecological research through a place-based focus. Ecosystems and People, 18 (1). pp. 598-608.

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The Programme on Ecosystem Change and Society (PECS) was established in 2011, and is now one of the major international social-ecological systems (SES) research networks. During this time, SES research has undergone a phase of rapid growth and has grown into an influential branch of sustainability science. In this Perspective, we argue that SES research has also deepened over the past decade, and helped to shed light on key dimensions of SES dynamics (e.g. system feedbacks, aspects of system design, goals and paradigms) that can lead to tangible action for solving the major sustainability challenges of our time. We suggest four ways in which the growth of place-based SES research, fostered by networks such as PECS, has contributed to these developments, namely by: 1) shedding light on transformational change, 2) revealing the social dynamics shaping SES, 3) bringing together diverse types of knowledge, and 4) encouraging reflexive researchers.

Item ID: 77663
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 2639-5916
Keywords: Christian Albert, co-production, Ecosystem social-ecological systems, reflexive, sustainability science, transformations, valuation
Copyright Information: © 2022 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Date Deposited: 02 Mar 2023 03:02
FoR Codes: 41 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 4102 Ecological applications > 410299 Ecological applications not elsewhere classified @ 100%
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