Global environmental change, resilience, and sustainable outcomes

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

15 Scopus citations


It is increasingly clear that change is as "normal" a condition as stability when considering the condition of social-ecological systems. It is equally clear that knowledge of those systems must rely not just on the characteristics of the elements of the systems but equally on an understanding of the interactions among those units and the interactions of that system with forces and entities external to it. Moreover, there is deepening recognition that the world is extremely complex, that even the best scientific research on it comes with great uncertainty, and that many processes that govern it behave in a nonlinear fashion. All of this makes understanding and managing the world around us and our place within it extremely challenging, yet doing so remains fundamentally important to our collective future. We all must face living with the dangers of sudden environmental change. The chapters in this volume provide a new perspective on this problem by analyzing how past societies attempted to understand the hazards they faced, mitigate their impacts, and each in its own way avoid disasters. Each chapter is an analysis of regional archaeological data to learn about social responses to the threat and actuality of environmental hazards engendered by sudden and not so sudden but significant environmental change. Despite their limitations, archaeological data provide a new and potentially useful source of insight into how human groups adapt to the threat of environmental changes and how they respond to environmental changes that do occur.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationSurviving Sudden Environmental Change
Subtitle of host publicationAnswers from Archaeology
PublisherUniversity Press of Colorado
Number of pages8
ISBN (Print)9781607321675
StatePublished - 2012

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Social Sciences
  • General Arts and Humanities


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