Growth and Development

Ecosystems Phenomenology

  • Robert E. Ulanowicz

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xiv
  2. Robert E. Ulanowicz
    Pages 1-8
  3. Robert E. Ulanowicz
    Pages 9-27
  4. Robert E. Ulanowicz
    Pages 28-53
  5. Robert E. Ulanowicz
    Pages 54-80
  6. Robert E. Ulanowicz
    Pages 81-94
  7. Robert E. Ulanowicz
    Pages 95-137
  8. Robert E. Ulanowicz
    Pages 138-166
  9. Back Matter
    Pages 167-203

About this book


"What in the ever-loving blue-eyed world do these [U1ano­ wicz's] innocuous comments on thermodynamics have to do with ecology!" Anonymous manuscript reviewer The American Naturalist, 1979 "The germ of the idea grows very slowly into something recognizable. It may all start with the mere desire to have an idea in the first place. " Walt Kelly Ten Ever-Lovin' Blue-Eyed Years with Pogo, 1959 "It all seems extremely interesting, but for the life of me it sounds as if you pulled it out of the air," my good friend Ray Lassiter exclaimed to me after enduring about 20 minutes of my enthusiasm for the newly formu­ lated concept of "ascendency" in ecosystems. "It wasn't," I replied, "but it would take a book to show you where it came from. " If such was the reaction of someone usually sympathetic to my manner of thinking, what could I expect from those who viewed biological devel­ opment in the traditional way? After all, I was suggesting that it is possi­ ble to quantify the growth and development of an entire ecosystem. Fur­ thermore, I was maintaining that this development was not entirely determined by events and entities at smaller scales, and yet could influ­ ence these component processes and structures. To be sure, mine was only the latest of many challenges to straight reductionism, but, like everyone else with a new idea, I thought mine was special.


biological biology development dynamics ecology ecosystem growth structure temporal dynamics thermodynamics

Authors and affiliations

  • Robert E. Ulanowicz
    • 1
  1. 1.Chesapeake Biological LaboratoryUniversity of MarylandSolomonsUSA

Bibliographic information