Urban Ecology is the study of ecosystems that include humans living in cities and urbanizing landscapes. It is an emerging, interdisciplinary field that aims to understand how human and ecological processes can coexist in human-dominated systems and help societies with their efforts to become more sustainable. It has deep roots in many disciplines including sociology, geography, urban planning, landscape architecture, engineering, economics, anthropology, climatology, public health, and ecology. Because of its interdisciplinary nature and unique focus on humans and natural systems, the term "urban ecology" has been used variously to describe the study of humans in cities, of nature in cities, and of the coupled relationships between humans and nature. Each of these research areas is contributing to our understanding of urban ecosystems and each must be understood to fully grasp the science of Urban Ecology. Therefore, in Urban Ecology: An International Perspective on the Interaction Between Humans and Nature, we introduce students and practitioners of urban ecology to its roots, bases, and prospects by way of a diverse collection of historical and modern foundational readings. The editors are urban ecologists from the United States, Italy, and Germany who together view these readings as a fair representation of the importance of both natural and social sciences to Urban Ecology.
This book presents important papers in the field of Urban Ecology that both set the foundations for the discipline and to illustrate modern approaches, from a variety of perspectives and regions of the world. The editors do this by reprinting important publications, filling gaps in the published literature with a few targeted original works, and translating several key works originally published in German. The aim of this collection is to provide students, practitioners, and professionals with a rich background in some of the core facets of Urban Ecology.