Exploring Environmental Change Using an Integrative Method

Exploring Environmental Change Using an Integrative Method

Exploring Environmental Change Using an Integrative Method

Exploring Environmental Change Using an Integrative Method

Synopsis

The traditional approach for diagnosing & managing environmental change has been to reduce complexity in an attempt to identify simple relationships. Such a view presupposes that a problem setting can be clearly bounded & dealt with through appropriate remedial action. It tends to reject the complex real world as a diagnostic force because of its inherent unpredictability. This text argues that an acceptance of this uncertainty should be the starting point for environmental diagnostics & will draw upon "complex systems" thinking to introduce a policy-relevant integrative method. This conveys how existing intellectual resources can be exploited to explore environmental decision issues without resorting to such devices as "meta-methods" or "meta-disciplines." A number of techniques are introduced from different disciplines such as social science, agricultural & environmental studies, systems thinking & modeling, which have been drawn together in an integrated method. This is primarily related to an ongoing case study into agricultural practice & the degradation of soil & water resources in the Peloponnese region of Greece. Other case studies, including land-fill & environmental nuisance, are introduced.
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