Table 1. Scales and the problem of fit (adopted from Folke et al. 1998a).

Standard practice Improved practice
Abitrary (or even neglected) definition of scales Empirical definition of scales, based on actual processes
Finding the “right” scale of analysis Working at multiple scales
Alternating between scales of analysis Demonstrating cross-scale linkages
Hierarchy theory; scales are fixed, and are roughly decoupled; larger, slower processes control smaller, faster ones “Panarchy” theory; the scales of processes evolve over time, new levels emerge, some disappear; control may shift between levels