Science and management co-learning to navigate social-ecological issues 17-19 September 2019 Pine Lake Marina, Sedgefield, South Africa Background: The Garden Route Interface Meeting (GRIM) is an annual event taking place in the Garden Route and providing a forum for researchers and practitioners interested in better understanding and managing (or navigating) social-ecological systems (SES) and their complex interactions and feedbacks. Three types of interfaces are of particular interest: human-nature (social-ecological systems), theory-practice (scientists and managers), and social-natural (sciences). Previous meetings: The 2017 and 2018 meetings each attracted >70 delegates and key discussion themes during these meetings included the establishment of [...]
Climate Resilient African Landscapes (CRAL) The University of Cape Town invites black South Africans interested in working as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow (PDRF) with a focus in climate change and resilience to apply for the ARUA-CD Postdoctoral Research Fellowship position. The value of the fellowship is ZAR 250,000-300,000 depending on experience and is tenable for 12 months with the possibility of extension for further years subject to satisfactory progress. We aim to attract exceptional scholars who are academically capable and are committed to serving South Africa and the continent in the environmental and development field. Application Deadline: 15 March [...]
From January 2019, PECS will be jointly hosted by the Centre for Complex Systems in Transition (CST) at Stellenbosch University in South Africa, and the Stockholm Resilience Centre at Stockholm University in Sweden (SRC). PECS is a Future Earth core project which aims to integrate research on the stewardship of social-ecological systems, the services they generate, and the relationships among biodiversity, ecosystems, human wellbeing, livelihoods, inequality and poverty. The CST has a longstanding and close collaboration with the SRC, and is an obvious choice as an additional regional node to broaden the networks and reach of PECS. The [...]
We are bombarded with negative visions of the future, which may inhibit our ability to move towards a positive future for the Earth and humanity. In this project we aim to solicit, explore, and develop a suite of alternative, plausible visions of “Good Anthropocenes” – positive visions of futures that are socially and ecologically desirable, just, and sustainable, specifically from a southern African perspective.
A key concern facing large protected areas and buffer zones in southern Africa is that they are locked in a vicious cycle of rural poverty and environmental degradation. Weak knowledge about the practicalities of micro-governance, devolution and economic policy, weak stakeholder learning systems and a major shortage of professionals with economic, governance and stakeholder skills are central to these challenges.
This project focuses on the risk of transgressing critical thresholds or tipping points in social‐ecological systems that could trigger catastrophic regime shifts– large, abrupt and potentially irreversible changes – with respect to critical ecosystem services such as crop production, fisheries, and climate regulation. Such shifts can have major implications for human economies, health and well‐being, especially for poorer, marginalized groups in society.
This working group aims to explore the linkages between ecosystem services and human well-being, using a social ecological systems approach, and focusing on the development of tools and methods to measure, model and map ecosystem services and human well-being in the southern African region.
The “New Paradigm” project is a collaborative research programme of the above organisations which recognises and takes account of the inherent complexity of water related systems. This work is underpinned by the key concepts of complex socio-ecological systems (SES), trans-disciplinarity, resilience and strategic adaptive management. The project will be organised through research teams, case studies, specific eutrophication, microbial pollution, and resource protection focus areas, an integrated community-based response process, and a process of testing principles derived from project case studies in additional regions.
Jonga phambili Sinethemba (moving forward with hope) – Vulnerability, coping and adaptation within the context of climate change and HIV/AIDS in South Africa: Investigating strategies to strengthen livelihoods and food security and build resilience
The project supported 12 related studies (mainly postgraduate research projects) that have helped to build a very intricate and detailed picture of livelihoods, vulnerability and change in the communal areas of the Eastern Cape in two different contexts. The research has been undertaken in two sites in the rural Eastern Cape, South Africa; Lesseyton outside of Queenstown and Gatyana near Willowvale. The peri-urban nature of Lesseyton and the more isolated rural setting of Gatyana have resulted in some interesting and important contrasts in the findings.
This collaborative research project commenced in April 2013 and is funded by the Water Research Commission. The project aims to influence the way natural resource managers and policy makers think about, value and make decisions about ecological infrastructure. The case study area is the Touws River Catchment in the Garden Route and participatory action research will be used to promote meaningful change.