Table 1. Conceptual contributions and areas of convergence between resilience and vulnerability theory.
SES = social-ecological systems.

Analytical Concept Resilience Vulnerability Contribution to Integration
Integrated social-ecological analyses Move from ecological toward social dimensions within coupled SES; social often considered secondary; From social to coupled SES or human-environment systems; still rare to truly integrate ecological processes. Complementary
Approach to system Systems thinking Unit of analysis Complementary
Slow versus fast variables of change Core Core (understood as shocks and stresses) Complementary
Multiple stressors Multiple variables Core Contribution
Scale Core; Physical units from local to global Core: Usually social units from local to global, or geophysical units, e.g., a watershed Complementary
Alternate stable states Core Weak, except in terms of livelihood or governance strategies. Contribution
Social-ecological feedbacks Core Weak Contribution
Thresholds Core (understood primarily as physical) Rare Contribution
Adaptation Core Core Complementary
Transformation Core Weak, except in terms of livelihoods. Rarely is attention given to the processes enabling or underlying transformation. Contribution
Adaptive management Core Core Jointly evolving
Perturbations Core Core Complementary
Agency Weak Core Contribution
Risk reduction Weak Core Contribution
Empowerment Weak Core Contribution
Learning Core Emerging Jointly evolving
Different knowledge systems Core Core Complementary
Operationalization, implementation Emerging Advanced (development of tools for decision makers, practitioners) Contribution