Resilience 2017 Stockholm

Resilience 2017 conference

Fourth triennial conference on resilience will take place in Stockholm 21-23 August 2017

In 2008 Stockholm Resilience Centre launched the first resilience conference in Stockholm together with Resilience Alliance and other partner organizations. Since then, conferences have also taken place in Arizona (2011) and Montpellier (2014).

The upcoming Resilience 2017 conference will discuss resilience as a key lens for biosphere-based sustainability science, reflect back on the scientific progress made, and to set out exciting future directions for research. A main focus will be on global sustainability challenges and opportunities, which today are heavily influenced by the speed, scale and connectivity of the Anthropocene.


Participants will be invited to explore four major conference themes:


1) Social-ecological Transformations for Sustainability

Social-ecological transformations for sustainability
This theme will focus on the frontier of deliberate transformations to sustainability by exploring solutions compatible with both people and planet.
Considering the many global environmental problems that we face today, and that human activity is emerging as a major force shaping the Earth system, it is becoming clear that we need to facilitate, catalyze and identify opportunities for transformations to sustainability. This needs to happen at a rate and scale that the challenges of the Anthropocene call for. This conference theme will explore the frontiers in the research field around sustainability transformations – looking at potential solutions to the global challenges that can contribute to creating good lives for people today and in the future, while at the same time strengthen Earth’s life support system. We invite sessions and presentations on a wide range of topics that relate to sustainability transformations, such as patterns and dynamics of transformation in social-ecological systems, the role of social and technical innovation and agency in driving transformational change, and critical analyses of the dynamics of scale in order to understand how promising innovations, currently being promoted, can tip the social-ecological system into a new, sustainable pathway.


2) Teleconnections and Cross-scale Dynamics on a Human-dominated Planet

This theme will explore global complex interactions, effects and activities that in the context of increasing biosphere-disconnect, aim to reconnect people to the planet.
Airline traffic, shipping routes and land-based cargo physically connect the world, whereas increasingly global markets, financial flows and corporations connect distant ecosystems to consumers. The flow of ideas and information is in turn shaping global perceptions about the challenges and opportunities on a human-dominated planet. The effects of human activities are increasingly obvious on both poles, in the deserts, and in the deep sea, but paradoxically, it is also becoming increasingly clear how functioning ecosystems shape the physical and emotional well-being of humans. Increasingly connected societies and novel connections between humans and ecosystems are generating teleconnected and surprising dynamics. What is also becoming evident is the pervasive ability of societies to adapt and transform in the face of change – how ideas and innovation can spread on a connected planet. We invite sessions and presentations that will explore these complex interactions, from cascading ecosystem effects across the planet to the “contagious” rise of urban gardening and analogous activities aimed to reconnect societies to the biosphere.


3) Multi-level Governance and Biosphere Stewardship

This theme will explore how people in various contexts can strengthen the capacity of the biosphere to support human wellbeing in the face of change.

Humans across the globe depend on, influence, and are part of an intricate web of life that forms the biosphere. A major challenge is to meet human needs and aspirations in ways that nurture instead of erode the capacity of the biosphere to support future generations. Biosphere stewardship is about maintaining the diversity of living systems and their capacity to support human wellbeing in face of change and uncertainty. Stewardship emerges from human-nature interactions that engage with complexity through continuous learning. Examples range from urban gardening to wetland restoration and sustainable fisheries, involving actors, networks and organizations. Multi-level governance connects local initiatives to regional, national and international decision-making , enabling stewardship and allowing for context-specific responses to change at an appropriate time and scale. This conference theme invites sessions and presentations that advance theory and practice of biosphere stewardship and multi-level governance. For example: What characterizes governance structures and processes that enable stewardship at multiple scales? What shapes and forms can stewardship take in an urbanizing and increasingly connected world


4) Approaches and methods for understanding social-ecological system dynamics

This theme will focus on inter- and transdisciplinary scientific approaches that can support research and understanding of social-ecological interactions in the Anthropocene.

Analyzing the challenges and opportunities of the Anthropocene, with a specific focus on human-environmental interactions, requires innovative approaches and methodologies. This ranges from novel method development within the field of sustainability science itself, to combining traditional methods from the natural and social sciences and the humanities in new and creative ways to address sustainability questions, and to engaging with stakeholders in processes specifically designed to co-create knowledge and solve particular problems. While discussions on approaches and methods will surface in all conference themes, this theme will specifically focus on the inter- and transdisciplinary scientific approaches and theories that may best support research in the Anthropocene, in order to genuinely debate and understand social-ecological interactions in the 21st century.


5.) Cross-cutting perspectives on resilience

This theme will explore a number of cross-topic themes, each illustrating recent developments in resilience thinking.
Resilience approaches and thinking has made advances in multiple domains of science and society the last decade. This conference theme will explore this progress in a diversity of topics ranging from marine systems, to climate change adaptation and food security. The ambition is to discuss emerging insights, key challenges for research and applications, and exciting new opportunities. Sessions in this theme have been put together by the conference’s Scientific Committee based on submitted abstracts as a means to secure that multiple perspectives on resilience and its applications, are presented and discussed during the conference.