Resilience design: toward a synthesis of cognition, learning, and collaboration for adaptive problem solving in conservation and natural resource stewardship
Charles G. Curtin, MIT-USGS Science Impact Collaborative, Massachusetts Institute of Technology; Mora Watershed Alliance
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Through the resilience design approach, I propose to extend the resilience paradigm by re-examining the components of adaptive decision-making and governance processes. The approach can be divided into three core components: (1) equity design, i.e., the integration of collaborative approaches to conservation and adaptive governance that generates effective self-organization and emergence in conservation and natural resource stewardship; (2) process design, i.e., the generation of more effective knowledge through strategic development of information inputs; and (3) outcome design, i.e., the pragmatic synthesis of the previous two approaches, generating a framework for developing durable and dynamic conservation and stewardship. The design of processes that incorporate perception and learning is critical to generating durable solutions, especially in developing linkages between wicked social and ecological challenges. Starting from first principles based on human cognition, learning, and collaboration, coupled with nearly two decades of practical experience designing and implementing ecosystem-level conservation and restoration programs, I present how design-based approaches to conservation and stewardship can be achieved. This context is critical in helping practitioners and resources managers undertake more effective policy and practice.
cognition; collaborative adaptive management; linked social-ecological systems; resilience design; wicked systems