Fig. 2. Five major and interrelated components of the telecoupling framework. The telecoupled system is hierarchically structured and is influenced by within-level and cross-level interactions. At the telecoupled system level, it includes a set of interacting coupled human and natural systems through flows. At the coupled system level, it consists of three interrelated components, agents, causes, effects. At the component level, each component has different attributes. Causes produce a telecoupling between at least two coupled human and natural systems, which generate effects that are manifested in one or more coupled human and natural systems. The telecoupling is made possible by agents nested within the systems that facilitate or hinder the unidirectional or bidirectional flows of material/energy or information among systems. Systems can be defined as sending, receiving, and/or spillover systems, depending on the directional movement of the flow considered. For the sake of simplicity, structure and processes, e.g., local couplings, within a coupled system are not shown except those that are directly related to telecouplings between systems.

Fig. 2