Restoring Lands - Coordinating Science, Politics and Action

Complexities of Climate and Governance

  • Herman A. Karl
  • Lynn Scarlett
  • Juan Carlos Vargas-Moreno
  • Michael Flaxman

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xv
  2. Introduction

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 1-1
    2. Herman A. Karl, Lynn Scarlett, Juan Carlos Vargas-Moreno, Michael Flaxman
      Pages 3-17
  3. Science, Technology, and Engineering (Tools and Methods)

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 19-19
    2. Michael Flaxman, Juan Carlos Vargas-Moreno
      Pages 21-25
    3. Paul H. Kirshen, Ellen M. Douglas, Michael Paolisso, Ashley Enrici
      Pages 85-107
    4. Olivier Barreteau, Géraldine Abrami, William’s Daré, Derrick Du Toit, Nils Ferrand, Patrice Garin et al.
      Pages 109-127
  4. Politics and Policy (Governance and Frameworks)

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 161-161
    2. Kathi K. Beratan, Herman A. Karl
      Pages 183-216
    3. David Mattson, Herman Karl, Susan Clark
      Pages 239-259
    4. Stephen S. Light, Jan Adamowski
      Pages 261-304
    5. Daniel Hogendoorn, David Laws, Dessie Lividikou, Arthur Petersen
      Pages 305-334
    6. Herman A. Karl, Lynn Scarlett, Paul Kirshen, Rebecca Dell, Hauwa Ibrahim, Laura Kuhl et al.
      Pages 335-351
  5. People and Action (Implementation and Stewardship)

  6. Synthesis

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 473-473
    2. Herman A. Karl, Lynn Scarlett, Juan Carlos Vargas-Moreno, Michael Flaxman
      Pages 475-506
  7. Back Matter
    Pages 507-538

About this book


Environmental issues, vast and varied in their details, unfold at the confluence of people and place. They present complexities in their biophysical details, their scope and scale, and the dynamic character of human action and natural systems. Addressing environmental issues often invokes tensions among battling interests and competing priorities. Air and water pollution, the effects of climate change, ecosystem transformations—these and other environmental issues involve scientific, social, economic, and institutional challenges. This book analyzes why tackling many of these problems is so difficult and why sustainability involves more than adoption of greener, cleaner technologies. Sustainability, as discussed in this book, involves knowledge flows and collaborative decision processes that integrate scientific and technological methods and tools, political and governance structures and regimes, and social and community values. The authors synthesize a holistic and adaptive approach to rethinking the framework for restoring healthy ecosystems that are the foundation for thriving communities and dynamic economies. This approach is that of collective action. Through their research and practical experiences, the authors have learned that much wisdom resides among diverse people in diverse communities. New collaborative decision-making institutions must reflect that diversity and tap into its wisdom while also strengthening linkages among scientists and decision makers.


From the pre-publication reviews:


“Finally, we have a book that explains how science is irrelevant without people.  It’s people who decide when and how to use science, not scientists.  This book gives us a roadmap for how to really solve complex problems.  It involves hard work, and creating new relationships between scientists and the public that don’t typically exist in our society.”


-John M. Hagan, Ph.D.

President, Manomet Center for Conservation Sciences


climate change ecosystems governance land restoration landscape ecology sustainability

Editors and affiliations

  • Herman A. Karl
    • 1
  • Lynn Scarlett
    • 2
  • Juan Carlos Vargas-Moreno
    • 3
  • Michael Flaxman
    • 4
  1. 1.University of New Hampshire, Durham, NewLincolnUSA
  2. 2.Resources for the Future, Washington, DCArlingtonUSA
  3. 3.Massachusetts Institute of Technology, CBrightonUSA
  4. 4.Massachusetts Institute of Technology, CCambridgeUSA

Bibliographic information