What is resilience? An introduction to social-ecological research
This paper is based largely on the Executive Summary of three scientific reports produced for the 3rd Nobel Laureate Symposium on global sustainability, which took place in Stockholm on May 16-19, 2011. It defines resilience and provides 12 case studies and additional resources to help us understand what resilience is all about.
Resilience is the capacity of a system, be it an individual, a forest, a city or an economy, to deal with change and continue to develop. It is about the capacity to use shocks and disturbances like a financial crisis or climate change to spur renewal and innovative thinking. Resilience thinking embraces learning, diversity and above all the belief that humans and nature are strongly coupled to the point that they should be conceived of as one social-ecological system.